Saturday, April 8, 2017

One and Four-get It

Tonight, the Philadelphia Phillies scored 12 runs in the 1st inning, something they've never done before, and they've been in business since 1883, the Chester Arthur Administration, just before the Brooklyn Bridge opened.

Five games into a new season, 45 innings, and the Yankees have scored a total of 18 runs.

This is unacceptable.

Masahiro Tanaka was better today, pitching 5 innings, giving up 3 runs, on 6 hits and 4 walks. Yes, that constitutes "better," compared to his 1st start of the season.

And he left with a 4-3 lead, thanks to Ronald Torreyes singling home 2 runs in the 2nd inning, and a 5th inning that included a balk by Kevin Gausman sending Austin Romine home, and a single by Starlin Castro that scored Jacoby Ellsbury.

Why was Romine, a backup catcher in the game? Because Gary Sanchez got hurt, injuring his biceps while fouling off a pitch in that 5th inning. He's being put on the 10-Day Disabled List. I didn't even know there was a 10-Day Disabled List. I know about the 15-Day, the 30-Day, and the 60-Day.

Kyle Higashioka, a catcher from the Los Angeles suburbs, will join the team in Baltimore for tomorrow's game. He batted .293 with an .864 OPS last season -- in 63 games at AA Trenton. He then batted .250 with an .820 OPS at AAA Scranton. All told, he had 21 home runs and 81 RBIs in the minors last season.

He'll be 27 in 2 weeks. If it takes you until you're 26 before you even reach Triple-A, and almost 27 before you play your 1st major-league game, that just screams "not good enough for the majors." "26th Man." "Quadruple-A." Most likely, he'll be the emergency catcher, backing up Romine, who's 28 and running out of chances to impress.

Girardi replaced Tanaka with Adam Warren in the 6th. He uncharacteristically kept Warren in for the 7th, and Warren got the 1st out. No problem, leave him in, right?

Wrong -- if you believe Joe Girardi's Binder. He took Warren out, and put in Tommy Layne. Layne's been good so far, but he allowed a double to Chris Davis. Why didn't Girardi leave Warren in to pitch to Davis? Because Davis is lefthanded, but Warren isn't, and Layne is.

How'd that work out, dummy?

Girardi immediately took Layne out, and brought in Dellin Betances, who should be the 7th inning man, with Andrew Miller as the 8th inning man and Aroldis Chapman as the 9th inning man. Except Brian Cashman stupidly traded Miller away last season for 4 "prospects," and so Betances is the 8th inning man, except Girardi brought him in for the 7th, and so we have no 8th inning man. When the starting pitcher should be the 8th inning man! But all bow down before the great god Pitch Count.

Mark Trumbo singled Davis home to tie the game. Betances got Welington Castillo (yes, that's how he spells it) out for the 2nd out, but Trumbo stole 2nd, and Hyun-Soo Kim singled him home.

The Yankees stranded 2 runners in the 1st inning, 1 in the 2nd, 2 in the 4th, 1 in the 5th, 1 in the 8th and 1 in the 9th; lost a runner trying to steal in the 6th; and went 1-2-3 in the 3rd and the 7th.

Orioles 5, Yankees 4. WP: Mychal Givens (1-0). SV: Zach Britton (3). LP: Betances (0-1). Girardi's Bullpen Blundering: 2.

The Yankees are now 1-4, just like they were in 1998. But in 1998, Joe Girardi was the starting catcher, not the manager. Joe Torre had his issues with the bullpen, but at least he didn't futz things up as often, or as much, as Girardi has.

It's like I'm on the opposite side of the Arsene Wenger debate at Arsenal. Except, while Girardi has won the League more recently than Wenger, he's had only 1 League title, 2 other Division titles, and 2 other Playoff berths. Since November 4, 2009, the Yankees' record in postseason games is 10-14 -- an average of less than 4 games per season. And it doesn't look like it will increase this October.

The series continues tomorrow afternoon at 1:35. CC Sabathia starts against Wade Miley.

Come on you Bombers, give the Big Fella some runs, so he can pitch 8 strong.

If Girardi will let him. Will he? Is the Pope Buddhist?

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