Thursday, June 22, 2017

Our Long Metropolitan Nightmare Is Over

Maybe the Subway line going to The Stadium
should be renamed: Not the D Train, but the Didi Train.

My fellow Yankee Fans: Our long metropolitan nightmare is over. The Yankees have ended their 7-game losing streak.

Last night, Jordan Montgomery started against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Yankee Stadium II, and got into the 6th inning, having allowed 2 runs on 5 hits and 2 walks, with 5 strikeouts. He should have been allowed to pitch longer.

But because Joe Girardi is an idiot who uses a binder instead of his eyes to decide what to do with pitchers, and Montgomery had thrown 97 pitches, he took Montgomery out, and brought in Chad Green to get the last out of the 6th inning. He did. Incredibly, he left Green in to pitch the 7th inning, and he got through that without allowing a hit, too.

But you gotta get runs. The Yankees did. Didi Gregorius hit a home run in the 2nd inning, his 8th of the season. For perspective: That's 8 home runs through 69 games, and the previous Yankee shortstop, guy named Jeter, averaged about 13.3 home runs per full season.

(Not saying Didi will have a better career than Derek. Saying he's having a pretty good season.)

Matt Holliday, moved to 1st base in place of the super-struggling Chris Carter, hit a home run in the 5th inning, his 15th. He's now at roughly the pace Carter was last season, when he hit 41 home runs to lead the National League. Except Holliday is doing it in the American League, and helping us, whereas Carter isn't helping us much at all.

The Yankees scored 3 more runs in the 7th, and 2 more in the 8th. It was 8-2 Pinstripes, and things were looking really good.

But because Joe Girardi is an idiot who uses a binder instead of his eyes to decide what to do with pitchers, and it wasn't a save situation, he decided to put Tyler Clippard in, to boost his confidence. You know, but showing him that he couldn't blow a 6-run lead in the 9th.

Clippard's 1st batter was Andrelton Simmons. Sounds like a law firm. And he ex post factoed the ball, nearly over the fence, settling for a double.

Clippard's 2nd batter was Martin Maldonado. Sounds like a cigar company. And he smoked the ball, fully over the fence, for a 2-run home run.

Clippard had thrown 7 pitches, and allowed 2 runs. Girardi came to his senses, and said, "To Hell with the binder, this guy is going to lose us the game if I don't get him out of there," and got him out of there. Clippard was tremendously booed as he walked back to the dugout -- or was that booing for Girardi himself?

It still wasn't a save situation, but Girardi brought in the closer, Aroldis Chapman. Lineout, groundout, strikeout.

Whew.

Final score: Yankees 8, Angels 4. WP: Montgomery (5-4). No save. LP: Ricky Nolasco (2-9).

The losing streak ends at 7. And, with the Boston Red Sox also losing, 6-4 to the Kansas City Royals, the Yankees are now back in 1st place in the American League Eastern Division, by half a game over the Sox, 2 in the loss column.

Perhaps, most importantly, Girardi may finally have learned a lesson. Maybe it's, "Manage with your head, not your binder." Or, maybe it's no more than, "Never, ever send Tyler Clippard out to pitch in an American League game." That, alone, could make the difference between winning the Division, and not. Which could make the difference between getting home-field advantage in the AL Division Series, and having to go through the Wild Card Game and not having home-field advantage in any round.

The series with the Angels concludes tonight, with Luis Severino starting against Jesse Chavez. Come on you Bombers!

*

Days until the Red Bulls play again: 2, this Saturday afternoon, at 1:30, against New York City FC, a Hudson River Derby at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey. Last week, also at Red Bull Arena, the teams faced each other in the U.S. Open Cup, the American version of England's FA Cup, for the 1st time, and the Red Bulls won, 1-0.

Days until the Red Bulls next play a "derby": See the previous answer. They will next play the Philadelphia Union on Tuesday, June 27, in the 5th Round of the U.S. Open Cup (the Round of 16), at Red Bull Arena. They will next play the New England Revolution on Wednesday, July 5, at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. And they will next play the D.C. Scum on Saturday, September 27, at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey.

Days until the U.S. national soccer team plays again: 9, a week from this Saturday, a friendly against Ghana, at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut. Qualification for the 2018 World Cup is not yet assured, but it's much more likely now, with the win over Trinidad & Tobago and the drew with Mexico, under manager Bruce Arena, than it was under the idiot Jurgen Klinsmann.

Days until The Arsenal play again: 21, on Thursday, July 13, when they begin their preseason tour of Australia and Asia, with a game against A-League winners Sydney FC at Stadium Australia in Sydney.

Days until the next Yankees-Red Sox series: 22, on Friday, July 14, at Fenway Park. Just 3 weeks.


Days until the Premier League season begins: 51, on Saturday, August 12. The Arsenal open at home to Leicester City. The schedule has been released. There is a chance, of course, that the TV networks could have Arsenal's match moved to the following Sunday or Monday.

Days until Rutgers University plays football again: 71on Friday, September 1, home to the University of Washington. Just 10 weeks.

Days until East Brunswick High School plays football again: 78, on Friday night, September 8, home to Sayreville, a "derby." The schedule has finally been released.

Days until the New Jersey Devils play again: 107, on Saturday night, October 7, home to the Colorado Avalanche. The schedule was released about 2 hours ago, thank you!

Days until the New Jersey Devils next play a local rival: 114, on Saturday night, October 14, against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden in Midtown Manhattan. Their 1st game against the New York Islanders will be on Sunday, January 7, 2018, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn -- and they'll have played the Rangers 3 times by then. Their 1st game against the Philadelphia Flyers will be on Saturday, January 13, 2018, at the Prudential Center in Newark -- and they'll have played the Rangers 3 times and the Islanders once by then. This is a weird schedule. But, at least, now we have it. The NBA usually doesn't release its new season's schedule until August.

Days until the Alex Rodriguez Contract From Hell officially runs out, and the Yankees can spend his salary on new players: 131, on October 31.

Days until the next election for Governor of New Jersey: 138, on Tuesday, November 7. Under 5 months.

Days until the next Rutgers-Penn State football game: 142, on Saturday, November 11, at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania.


Days until the next North London Derby: 149, on Saturday, November 18, at the Emirates Stadium. This game could be moved to the following day, for TV purposes.

Days until the next East Brunswick-Old Bridge Thanksgiving high school football game: 154, on Thursday, November 23, at 10:00 AM. Under 6 months, and thank God it's at home, at Jay Doyle's Green Grove, rather than at that purple shit pit on Route 9. Just 5 months.

Days until the next Winter Olympics begins in Pyeongchang, Korea: 236, on February 9, 2018. Under 8 months.

Days until the next World Cup kicks off in Russia: 357, on June 14, 2018. Just under 1 year, or 12 months. Has Bruce Arena turned our chances around? Maybe. Or maybe, with the tournament on his soil, Vladimir Putin will tell his bitch Donald Trump to tell Bruce Arena to tank the games. Maybe not. Or maybe only if we end up playing Russia. I don't think Arena will listen. If he doesn't, I hope his life insurance is paid up, because Putin has had people killed for defying him.

Days until September 2018 roster call-ups, when we can finally start to expect seeing some of these wonderful "prospects" for whom Yankee general manager Brian Cashman threw away a chance at the 2016 Playoffs: 436. Under a year and a half, or a little over 14 months. Of course, we could end up seeing one of more of them sooner than that, but since most of them are at Double-A Trenton now, if that, who's kidding who?

Days until the next Congressional election: 502, on November 6, 2018. Under a year and a half, or under 17 months.

Days until the Baseball Hall of Fame vote is announced, electing Mariano Rivera: 566, on January 9, 2019. A little over a year and a half, or under 19 months.

Days until the Baseball Hall of Fame vote is announced, electing Derek Jeter: 931, on January 8, 2020. A little over 2 1/2 years, or under 31 months.

Days until the next Summer Olympics begins in Tokyo, Japan: 1,136, on July 24, 2020. A little over 3 years, or a little over 37 months.

Days until the next Presidential election: 1,598, on November 3, 2020. Under 3 1/2 years, or under 41 months.

Days until Liberation Day: 1,676, at noon on January 20, 2021. Under 4 years, or a little under 43 months. Note that this is liberation from the Republican Party, not just from Donald Trump. Having Mike Pence as President wouldn't be better, just differently bad, mixing theocracy with plutocracy, rather than mixing kleptocracy with plutocracy.

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