Sunday, April 16, 2017

CC Turns Back Clock for Yanks' 6th Straight

Yesterday afternoon, CC Sabathia partied like it was 2009. The Big Fella went 7 1/3rd innings against the St. Louis Cardinals at Yankee Stadium, didn't allow a run until a Jedd Gyorko home run in the 8th, allowing just 3 hits and a walk, striking out 6. Joe Girardi let him throw 97 pitches, and 62 of them went for strikes.

Meanwhile, Cardinal Carlos Martinez didn't have it. He walked the 1st 2 batters of the game, Brett Gardner and Aaron Hicks. He struck Chris Carter out, but threw a low pitch that Yadier Molina couldn't handle, for a passed ball that advanced the runners. He struck Jacoby Ellsbury out, then threw a wild pitch to advance the runners again, scoring Gardner. Then he walked Starlin Castro and Chase Headley, to reload the bases. Then he struck Greg Bird out to end the inning.

At this point, Bird was batting .042. Someone joked that he was celebrating Jackie Robinson Day by making Jackie's uniform number his batting average.

Think about that: No hits, no errors, and he struck out the side -- but still allowed a run.

Ronald Torreyes led off the bottom of the 6th with a double to left-center. A Gardner groundout moved him to 3rd. Hicks grounded back to Martinez, and he tried to start an inning-ending 1-6-3 double play by throwing Hicks out at 2nd. But he threw the ball away, allowing Torreyes to score and Hicks to reach 2nd.

Then Carter, who'd been terrible for the Yankees thus far, singled Hicks home. That 3rd run turned out to be crucial, because CC tired in the 8th. Adam Warren got the last 2 outs in the 8th, then Tyler Clippard got the 1st out in the 9th, before allowing a homer to Stephen Piscotty.

Girardi couldn't use Aroldis Chapman or Dellin Betances again, as they were tired from previous pitching. But something told him to ignore the binder and stick with the pitcher he had, so he stuck with Clippard.

At first, it seemed to work, as Clippard struck out Molina. One out to go. But he allowed a single by Matt Adams (Kolten Wong pinch-ran for him, tying run), and walked Greg Garcia (potential winning run). Fortunately, he struck Randal Grichuk out to end it.

Yankees 3, Cardinals 2. WP: Sabathia (2-0, ERA 1.74 in 3 starts). SV: Clippard (1). LP: Martinez (0-2).

That's 6 straight wins for the Yankees, after losing 4 of their 1st 5. Maybe this is another 1998 after all.

The series concludes on this Easter evening, on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball, with Michael Pineda going against Adam Wainright, as the Pinstripes try to sweep the Redbirds.


Days until The Arsenal play again: 1, tomorrow afternoon, at 3:00 (8:00 in the evening, their time), away to North-East club Middlesbrough.

Days until the Red Bulls play again: 6, this Saturday night at 7:30, home to the Columbus Crew. Last night, they beat arch-rival D.C. United 2-0.

Days until the next Yankees-Red Sox series: 9, starting a week from next Tuesday, at 7:00 PM, at Fenway Park.

Days until the next North London Derby: 14on Sunday, April 30, at White Hart Lane, for the last time, before Spurs' old stadium us mercifully demolished to make way for the new one. It is also possible that Arsenal could face Tottenham again this season, in the FA Cup Final -- the result of which would absolutely be treated as a referendum on Arsène Wenger's last season as manager. Well, maybe not if he wins it.

Days until the Red Bulls next play a "derby": 20, against the Philadelphia Union, on Saturday, May 6, at Talen Energy Stadium in Chester, Pennsylvania. They will next play the New England Revolution on Saturday, May 27, at Red Bull Arena. They will next play a Hudson River Derby against New York City FC on Saturday, June 24, at Red Bull Arena. And they will next play the D.C. Scum on Saturday, September 27, at Red Bull Arena.

Days until the U.S. national soccer team plays again: 53on Thursday night, June 8, in a CONCACAF World Cup Qualifier, at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in the Denver suburbs, against Trinidad & Tobago. Under 2 months. This game is a must-win.

Days until Rutgers University plays football again: 138, on Friday, September 1, 2017, home to the University of Washington. A little over 4 months. This game had been set for the following day, but has been moved back.

Days until East Brunswick High School plays football again: Unknown, as the 2017 schedule hasn't been released yet. I now know that high school football games have been scheduled in Middlesex County, New Jersey on Friday night, September 8. That's 145 days from now.

Days until the New Jersey Devils play again: We don't know, as the 2017-18 NHL schedule has yet to be released. The NHL season usually begins on the 2nd Friday in October, which, in 2017, would be... ugh... Friday the 13th. That's 180 days. Under 6 months.

Days until the New Jersey Devils next play a local rival: See the previous answer, although the 1st game isn't likely to be against either the New York Rangers, the New York Islanders or the Philadelphia Flyers.

Days until the next election for Governor of New Jersey: 205, on Tuesday, November 7, 2017. Under 7 months.

Days until the next Rutgers-Penn State football game: 209, on Saturday, November 11, 2017, at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania.

Days until the next East Brunswick-Old Bridge Thanksgiving game: 221, on Thursday morning, November 23, 2017, at 10:00. About 7 months, and thank God it's at home at Jay Doyle's grove, rather than at the purple shit pit on Route 9.

Days until the next World Cup kicks off in Russia: 424, on June 14, 2018. A bit over a year, or a little under 14 months. Has Bruce Arena turned our chances around? Or will Trump ruin them? Maybe, with the tournament on his soil, Putin will tell Trump to tell Bruce Arena to tank the games. Maybe not. Or maybe just if we end up playing Russia. I don't think Arena will listen. I hope his life insurance is paid up, because Putin kills people.

Days until the next Congressional election: 567, on November 6, 2018. Under 2 years, or a little under 19 months.

Days until the Baseball Hall of Fame vote is announced, electing Mariano Rivera: 633, on January 9, 2019. Under 2 years, or 21 months.

Days until the Baseball Hall of Fame vote is announced, electing Derek Jeter: 998, on January 8, 2020. Under 3 years, or 33 months.

Days until the next Summer Olympics begins in Tokyo, Japan: 1,196, on July 24, 2020. Under 3 1/2 years, or a little over 39 months.

Days until the next Presidential election: 1,298, on November 3, 2020. Under 4 years, or under 43 months.

Days until Liberation Day: 1,379, at noon on January 20, 2021. Under 4 years, or a little over 45 months. Note that this is liberation from the Republican Party, not Donald Trump. Mike Pence wouldn't be better, just differently bad.

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