Monday, May 8, 2017

How Long It's Been: The Yankees Won a Game Going At Least 14 Innings

Last night, the Yankees beat the Chicago Cubs, 5-4 in 18 innings at Wrigley Field.

As the innings went by, I remembered that the Yankees had lost a lot of games in extra innings the last few years, due to poor hitting and Joe Girardi's bullpen mismanagement. To be fair, last night's game was a masterclass by Girardi.

But I looked it up: When was the last time the Yankees won a game that went at least 13 innings? At least 14? 15? And so on.

The last time the Yankees won a game going at least 13 innings was last August, so, no big deal.

But at least 14 innings? That was on July 22, 2014, at Yankee Stadium II, 2-1 over the Texas Rangers. Chase Whitley started, and he pitched 6 shutout innings, only 75 pitches, but Girardi took him out anyway. David Huff gave up a home run to J.P. Arencibia in the top of the 13th, but a Brett Gardner double and a Jacoby Ellsbury single tied it up. In the bottom of the 14th, a double by Brian Roberts and singles by Francisco Cervelli and Chase Headley made a winning pitcher out of Jeff Francis.

July 22, 2014. That's nearly 3 full years ago. How long has that been? Has the world really changed that much?

*

Whitley, Huff, Roberts, Cervelli, Francis, Derek Jeter, Carlos Beltran, Brian McCann, Kelly Johnson, Ichiro Suzuki, Zelous Wheeler, Matt Thornton, David Robertson and Shawn Kelly all played for the Yankees in this game, and none of them are still here. The only ones who played in this game who are still with the Yankees are Brett Gardner, Dellin Betances, and, noting that he has been traded and reacquired since, Adam Warren.

The Atlanta Braves, the Atlanta Falcons, the Minnesota Vikings, the San Francisco 49ers, the Sacramento Kings, the Edmonton Oilers, the Detroit Red Wings, and, locally, the New York Islanders have all moved into new venues. The St. Louis Rams and the San Diego Chargers have moved, both to Los Angeles.

The Giants, the Jets, the Knicks and the Islanders have all changed head coaches since then. The Nets and the Devils have done so twice.

The defending World Champions were the Boston Red Sox * in baseball, the Seattle Seahawks in football, the San Antonio Spurs in basketball and the Los Angeles Kings in hockey. The World Cup had just been held in Brazil, won by Germany. Brazil has also since hosted the Olympics. Manchester City was champion of England's Premier League, and Arsenal had just won the FA Cup.

Caitlin Jenner was still Bruce Jenner, and was still a Kardashian. The Duggar family was still regarded as good Christians. Bill Cosby was still considered a good person. Gay marriage was legal in about 1/3 of the country, and no more than that. Flying the Confederate flag on government property was not considered an unpardonable sin.

Barack Obama was President, and the idea that Donald Trump could not only get elected to the office, but could actually do the job, was insane. (Well, his doing the job remains insane.) The idea a candidate for President could insult women, nonwhites, non-Christians and the handicapped, insult his primary opponents to their faces, tell his opponent to her face that he's going to put her in jail, and outright call for the assassination of his opponent -- three times -- and not only not be shamed out of the race, but come close enough to winning for hackers to fix the election for him, was impossible to accept.

It happened. It is still impossible to accept.

Baseball figure Yogi Berra; basketball figures Anthony Mason, Moses Malone, Harry Gallatin, Flip Saunders, Jim Loscutoff, Dolph Schayes, Pat Summitt, Nate Thurmond and Fab Melo; hockey figures Viktor Tikhonov, Jean Beliveau, Al Arbour, Gordie Howe, Milt Schmidt and Vladimir Petrov; soccer figures Udo Lattek, Dave Mackay, Ron Springett, Ignacio Zoco, Howard Kendall, Marton Fulop,  Bob Foster, Gerry Byrne, Jimmy Hill, Don Howe, Johan Cruyff, Cesare Maldini, Joao Havelange, David Herd, Carlos Alberto Torres, Graham Taylor, Piet Keizer, Bengt Gustavsson and Raymond Kopa; gymnast Vera Caslavska; golfer Arnold Palmer; diver Sammy Lee; track stars Mal Whitfield and Miruts Yifter; rugby star Jonah Lomu and Joost van der Westhuizen; mixed martial artist Kimbo Slice; professional wrestlers Rowdy Roddy Piper, Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka, George "The Animal" Steele, Ivan Koloff and Joanie "Chyna" Laurer; and boxers Bob Foster and The Greatest of All Time, Muhammad Ali, were still alive.

So were political figures Ian Paisley, Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier, Edward Gough Whitlam, Thomas Menino, Mario Cuomo, Edward Brooke, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, Lee Kwan Yew, Denis Healey, Fred Thompson, Ahmed Chalabi, Helmut Schmidt, Kim Young-sam, Antonin Scalia, Boutros Boutros-Ghali, Nancy Reagan, Rob Ford, George Voinovich, Phyllis Schlafly, John McLaughlin, Shimon Peres, King Rama IX of Thailand, King Kigeli V of Rwanda, Emir Khalfia of Qatar, Janet Reno, Melvin Laird, Fidel Castro, Mario Soares, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, James Mancham, Antony Armstrong-Jones, Omar Abdel-Rahman, Rene Preval, David Rockefeller and Martin McGuinness.

So were scientists Richard Attenborough, John Forbes Nash, Oliver Sacks, Henry Heimlich, and astronauts Edgar Mitchell, Donald E. Williams, Gene Cernan and John Glenn. So were writers Gunter Grass, E.L. Doctorow, Jackie Collins, Umberto Eco, Harper Lee, Imre Kertesz, Alvin Toffler, Elie Wiesel, Tim LaHaye, Edward Albee, Richard Adams, Nat Hentoff, William Peter Blatty, Paula Fox, Robert James Waller, Derek Walcott and Yevgeny Yetvushenko. So were fashion designer Oscar de la Renta, and hotel magnate Kirk Kerkorian.

So were actors Rod Taylor, Louis Jourdan, Leonard Nimoy, Christopher Lee, Dick Van Patten, Omar Sharif, Alex Rocco, Dean Jones, Gunnar "Leatherface" Hansen, Robert Loggia, Wayne Rogers, Alan Rickman, Abe Vigoda, George Gaynes, Tony Burton, George Kennedy, Larry Drake, Ken Howard, William Schallert, Alan Young, Anton Yelchin, David Huddleston, Kenny Baker, Fyvush Finkel, Gene Wilder, Hugh O'Brian, Bill Nunn, Michael Massee, Robert Vaughn, Ron Glass, Alan Thicke, Om Puri, Miguel Ferrer, John Hurt, Mike Connors, Richard Hatch, Bill Paxon, Tim Pigott-Smith and Clifton James.

So were actresses Lauren Bacall, Polly Bergen, Jan Hooks, Luise Rainer, Anita Ekberg, Yvonne Craig, Maureen O'Hara, Patty Duke, Doris Roberts, Gloria DeHaven, Alexis Arquette, Charmian Carr, Florence Henderson, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Carrie Fisher, Debbie Reynolds, Mary Tyler Moore, Barbara Hale, Emmanuelle Riva, Erin Moran and Daliah Lavi. So were directors Glen A. Larson, Wes Craven, Melissa Mathison, Guy Hamilton, Michael Cimino, Garry Marshall and Jonathan Demme. So were comedians Robin Williams, Joan Rivers, Mike Nichols, Anne Meara, Garry Shandling and Don Rickles.

So were singers Joe Cocker, Lesley Gore, Percy Sledge, Ben E. King, Theodore Bikel, Lynn Anderson, Cilla Black, Scott Weiland, Lemmy Kilmister, Natalie Cole, David Bowie, Glenn Frey, Maurice White, Merle Haggard, Prince, Billy Paul, Guy Clark, Christina Grimmie, Marni Nixon, Pete Burns, Bobby Vee, Leonard Cohen, George Michael, Al Jarreau, Kurt Moll and Chuck Berry.

So were musicians Jack Bruce, B.B. King, Ornette Coleman, Allen Toussaint, Phil Taylor, George Martin, Keith Emerson, Nick Menza, Ralph Stanley, Scotty Moore, Rudy Van Gelder, Neville Marriner, Leon Russell, Greg Lake and Rick Parfitt.

The last time the Yankees won a game that was 14 innings or longer, they were all still alive. Now, none of them is.

Gotham, NCIS: New Orleans, Black-ish, How to Get Away With Murder, The Flash, Jane the Virgin, Marvel's Agent Carter, Empire, Secrets and Lies, CSI: Cyber, American Crime, The Royals, Lip Sync Battle, Daredevil, Humans, I Am Cait, Fear the Walking Dead, Blindspot, Quantico, Supergirl, Chicago Med, Jessica Jones, Shades of Blue, Billions, Lucifer, American Crime Story, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, Fuller House, The Real O'Neals, Preacher, Stranger Things, Bull, This Is Us, Designated Survivor, Speechless, Pitch, MacGyver, Luke Cage, Westworld, Timeless, The Crown, Riverdale, Powerless, Chicago Justice, Iron Fist, Imaginary Mary, 13 Reasons Why, Dear White People and American Gods have all premiered since then.

Gang Related, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, True Blood, Chelsea Lately, the next-generation version of Dallas, Boardwalk Empire, Sons of Anarchy, The Newsroom, White Collar, the Colbert Report, 106 & Park, The Mentalist, Two and a Half Men, The Queen Latifah Show, Cougar Town, Justified, Revenge, Mad Men, 19 Kids and Counting, Hot in Cleveland, Phineas and Ferb, Nurse Jackie, Degrassi: The Next Generation, The Daily Show with John Stewart, Key & Peele, Hannibal, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Mythbusters, The Good Wife, Castle, Mike & Molly, House of Lies, Penny Dreadful, Person of Interest, The McLaughlin Group, Rizzoli & Isles, The Vampires Diaries, Bones, Grimm, Black Sails, Switched at Birth, Girls, and, thank God, American Idol, Duck Dynasty and The O'Reilly Factor have aired their series finales.

The much-hyped Girl Meets WorldSelfie, State of Affairs and Constantine have done both. So did Agent Carter and The Mysteries of Laura, which deserved better. CBS' The Late Show was handed from David Letterman to Stephen Colbert, and its The Late Late Show was handed from Craig Ferguson to James Corden.

Major films released in the Summer of 2014 included Transformers: Age of Extinction, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, The Purge: Anarchy, Guardians of the Galaxy, the Dwayne Johnson version of Hercules, the remake of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Expendables 3, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, and Birdman.

The Number 1 song in America was "Rude" by Magic! (Yes, they spell their name with an exclamation point at the end.) Ed Sheeran released his album x, 5 Seconds of Summer released their self-titled debut album, , Trey Songz released Trigga, Sia released 1000 Forms of Fear, and Robin Thicke released Paula, a tribute to his estranged wife, actress Paula Patton, with a lead single titled "Get Her Back." (Spoiler alert: It didn't.)

A U.S. postage stamp was the most expensive that it has ever been, 49 cents. On April 10, 2016, it was dropped to the current 47 cents. A subway ride in New York was $2.50. The average prices of a gallon of gas was $3.59, a cup of coffee $2.70, a McDonald's meal $6.79, a movie ticket $8.50, a new car $25,464, and a new house $340,400. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 17,113.54.

In the Summer of 2014, King Juan Carlos I of Spain abdicated, in favor of his son, King Felipe VI. ISIS began its offensive in Iraq. There had just been a revolution in Thailand. A Russian missile shot down a Malaysia Airlines flight, killing nearly 300 people.

Howard Baker, and Johnny Winter, and Alfredo di Stefano died. No one yet knows the names of the great people who were born in the Summer of 2014, but Mario Goetze scored an extra-time goal to win the World Cup, and the stars of Mike Trout, Yasiel Puig, Clayton Kershaw and Madison Bumgarner continued to rise.

July 22, 2014. The Yankees beat the Texas Rangers 2-1 in 14 innings. They did not win another game that long, or longer, until last night.

Let's hope they don't have to do it again for a while, huh?

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