Tag Archives: yankees

Another Yankee Loss Last Night

Like they say, it’s early in the season and the championship is never decided in April. Still, you’d like to see at least a glimmer from your team. The Yanks, while much more settled defensively than last night, seem fairly quiet at the plate, and abysmal when it comes to runners in scoring position.

Here’s my scorecard for the Yanks last in last night’s game against Houston:

Yankees Game 2 Vis

The had some hits, but only one (Beltran in the 8th) had an extra base hit. And with runners in scoring position? They basically scored when, with a runner on first and third and no one out, Solarte came up and hit into a double play, allowing Brian Roberts to score. It doesn’t even count as an RBI!

On the other hand, Houston didn’t get as many hits, but look at the hits they did get:

Yankees Game 2 Home

Second pitch of their first at-bat and Fowler hit a home run. In his next at-bat, he hits a triple, getting the two most difficult hits for the cycle out of the way in rapid order (he almost singled in the 6th).  Then there’s another triple in the 6th and another home run in the 7th. Sigh!

Hopefully the Yanks can pull things together and avoid the sweep tonight before flying up to Toronto.

 

My Scorecards for the Yankees Opening Day Game Against Houston

Last night, the Yankees played their opening day game against the Houston Astros down in Houston. As this is Derek Jeter’s last season, it was his last opening day game. I watched the game, and as I usually do when watching, I kept score. Here are my scorecards, visitor and home, respectively.

Yanks Opener Visitors
Yankees opener, visitors scorecard
Yankees opener, home scorecard
Yankees opener, home scorecard

The Yankees lost 6-2. 4 of those 6 runs came in a very defensively sloppy first inning by the Yankees. The scorecard doesn’t quite capture the sloppiness, but for a while there, the Yanks looked more like a AA team than a major league club.

CC Sabathia also got off to a rocky start, giving up 6 hits in the first two innings, including 2 home runs, before finally settling down. He gave up only 2 more hits for the remaining 4 innings he pitched. He also struck out 6. And, if you look at Houston’s scorecard, you’ll see an asterisk next to CC’s strikeout of Fowler in the bottom of the 4th inning. The asterisk is to note that this was CC’s 1,000th strikeout in a Yankee uniform.

All eyes were on Jeter, of course, and I winced along with everyone else when he was hit by a pitch in his first at bat. But it was superficial. He ended up 1 for 3 with a run scored. Looking at the pitches the Yankees saw, it looks like they weren’t as patient at the plate as they usually are, but you’ve got to give them some leeway. It’s the first game of the season and they were probably excited to be playing baseball again.

Someone is bound to ask why the paperless guy is still keeping score on paper. I’ve tried other methods. I’ve used apps, and other electronic means of keeping score. The truth is, I like keeping score on paper. Normally, I get a scorebook each year, and indeed, I ordered my scorebook but it hasn’t arrived yet. I like watching the game with a pencil behind my ear and my scorecard in my lap. Of course, when the game is over, the scorecard gets scanned into Evernote.

Tigers Sweep Yankees in Four Games in the ALCS

Well, it would seem that nearly all of my predictions for the playoffs this season were wrong.

The final nail in the coffin was the Tigers easy sweep of the Yankees last night. I’m hard pressed to remember a time when I’ve seen the Yankee hitters slump this badly in a post season series. They just weren’t hitting. Period. The first three games were all close thanks to the Yankees pitching, which did a fine job. They simply got no offensive support. It was a dreadful disappointment. I was glad to see Joe Girardi benching players (like Alex Rodriguez) who were particularly opprobrious at the plate. But no one else seemed to be able to step it up. About the only two people hitting consistently on the team were Jeter and Ichiro, and of course, Jeter went out with a broken ankle.

At this point, it looks as if the World Series will be an entirely central division affair, Detroit vs. St. Louis. I’d rather see St. Louis than San Francisco, that’s for sure.

And let me give credit to the Detroit Tigers. They were the team with the fewest wins leading a division when they came into the playoffs and they managed to beat some tough teams. Or at least, a team that was tough only a few weeks before.

Next season will be interesting with Houston moving to the AL west and the increase in interleague play.

Is it April yet?

Scorecard From My Yankees Inside Experience (Tampa at New York)

I’d meant to post my scorecard from the Yankees game I attended a few weeks ago, and never got around to it. So I present you with my scorecard today. Note that after the 6th inning, I went to get some ice cream and the line was long so I didn’t get back to my seat in time to record a half-inning. At that point, I decided to give up. But most of the game is here, for those interested in seeing my slightly nonstandard method of scoring.

Here is Tampa’s scorecard:

Scorecard 1.PNG

And here is the Yankees scorecard:

Scorecard 2.PNG

My Yankees Inside Experience

On Saturday, my brother-in-law dropped me off in front of Yankee Stadium at 10am. I was there for my Yankees Inside Experience, which was a gift to me from my family for my 40th birthday. We were told to arrive at Gate 6 at 10:15am. There was a short line when I strolled up. The sky was blue and the weather was perfect, if maybe a little warm in the direct sunlight. At 10:15, they began letting us in. We registered, had our picture taken, and received a badge, after which we were assembled into groups of 30 for a private tour of the stadium. I made sure to dress appropriately for the occasion:

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I was not the only one. There was no mistaking the fans who got to roam around Yankee stadium on Saturday morning before almost anyone else was there.

The tour took us through four main attractions in the stadium. We started with a tour of the Yankees dugout, which was pretty amazing. Our group threaded our way through the aisles down toward the field and then out onto the field itself. We got to walk on the warning track (which, as we learned, is not made of dirt, but of a certain mixture of sand and clay) and then down into the dugout.

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Everyone took a seat somewhere in the dugout. I sat on the far left end (if you are facing the field) where Yankees manager Joe Girardi sits (or more often than not, stands) during a game:

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People had a blast getting to see the dugout, which is apparently not something they do often on the tour. They did it Saturday only because the game time was a later-than-usual start: 4:05pm as opposed to a usual 1pm Saturday start. At first, I was just overawed by it: I was sitting in the Yankees dugout! Later, I tried to act a little more casual:

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My Upcoming “Inside NY Yankees Experience”

One week from today, I will be in New York for my “Inside NY Yankees Experience,” a gift my family gave to me for my fortieth birthday. Earlier in the week, I received my itinerary and ticket for the game in the mail. The Yanks are playing Tampa Bay, in what is turning out to be a pretty close race in the AL East. I guess I picked a good game.

For anyone curious about what the Inside Experience involves, here is what my itinerary looks like:

  • 10:15am: Guest arrival and registration
  • 10:30-12:00pm: Exclusive stadium tour
  • 12:00-12:45pm: Photo and autograph opportunity with a current roster player. (I kind of wonder if the player will really want my autograph. How many baseball players are science fiction fans?)
  • 12:45-1:30pm: Lunch Buffet
  • 1:30pm: Guest depart to their seats
  • 4:05pm: First pitch

Since we are in September, there is now a 40-man roster, which means the player we meet could be the fellow just called up from single-A. Regardless, I am very excited about this event. My seats are behind home plate, looking up the third base line. My brother-in-law is also attending the game, although he was way, way up in the nosebleeds on the third base side.

While I doubt I will be live-blogging the game, you can expect a post and pictures afterward. And I’ll be doing my best to tweet the goings-on while I am there.

Last Friday’s Nationals/Yankees game

This past Friday, Kelly and I had a night out. The New York Yankees were in town to play the Washington Nationals as part of interleague play and we went to see them courtesy of a friend of ours who gave us the tickets.

And what tickets they were! Talk about being spoiled for all future games! The tickets were in the PNC Diamond Club. The seats were behind home plate, with a great view of the field. We had full access to the Diamond Club, which had a bar and buffet. Also, there were people wandering around to take our orders from our seats. And best of all, the food, beer and wine was all included with the seats. Our view of the field looked like this:

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Yes, that is Jeter stepping up to the plate at the start of the game. We had just a blast. The two guys in the seats next to us were from Indiana and were both Yankees fans, which made the game even more fun. There were two women sitting behind us, and they were looking for the Lexus club, or something like that. Kelly told them she’d seen it at one point, and off they went. We later learned that one of them was Robinson Cano’s wife (I believe) and I forget who the other was. Whether or not that was true, I don’t know, but that’s what we were told.

Kelly took full advantage of the buffet, getting platefuls of all kinds of good foods. Even when we first came into the club, there was a big table lined with all kinds of candy and popcorn and Kelly had her fill of that, too. I had a hot dog, and later had some excellent chicken wings, and I don’t think I had an empty beer cup for the entire duration of the game.

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And you can see that I attended the game in full “uniform,” so to speak. The Yankees ended up winning the game 7-2. I think we both had a really nice night out, and to top it all off, we came home to find both kids sleeping, which has happened only once before when they’ve had a babysitter. Of course, going to a game like this really spoils you to those games where you find yourself sitting in the bleachers, paying $8 for a beer, instead of on cushioned seats where the beer is free. But that’s okay. It was still a lot of fun. Plus, I’ve got my Yankee Experience coming up in September and I imagine that will be a lot of fun, too.

A beautiful day for baseball

Yesterday turned out to be quite a remarkable day for baseball.

Early yesterday morning, the Little Man and I walked to our neighborhood Target to pick up some whiffle balls and a bat–his first–so that we could play with them later on that morning. The entire family hauled our way out to Bull Run Park for an event there in support of fallen fire fighters. The Little Man got to see all kinds of fire trucks and we even watched a helicopter take off. He wore a white t-shirt with a fire truck on it and there wasn’t a fire fighter that we passed that didn’t compliment him on his shirt. I got to spend time with the Little Miss, dancing around the field with her as the band played music. The Little Man didn’t seem too interested in baseball, what with everything else going on, but he swung the bat a few times before losing interest. We all had a blast and we all managed to get minor sunburns.

Later that afternoon, I turned on the Yankee game to find the Yanks down 9-0 against Boston in the 4th inning. Given the history of those two teams, I couldn’t imagine the Yankees coming back from that. Of course, that was superseded by the fact that Philip Humber of the Chicago White Sox was on the verge of pitching a perfect game. The whole family watched the bottom of the 9th inning and I, at least, could not sit down. When Humber went 3-0 against the first batter of the inning my heart was in my throat. But he managed to come back and strike him out! Next out was a pop fly. Finally, the 27th batter struck out but the ball got away from the catcher. The catcher made the throw to first, recording the final out–and Humber had his perfect game! The 21st in the history of baseball. I was ecstatic. It doesn’t matter what team a pitcher plays for; when they throw a perfect game, it is a momentous occasion for anyone who is a baseball fan. And this was the first one I’d ever seen happen in real time.

Once I turned back to the Yankee game, I saw that the score was now 9-5, thanks to a grand slam. Another 3-run shot made it 9-8. What happened next was an implosion the likes of which I have not seen in a long, long time. The Yankees had 2 consecutive 7-run innings in which they batted around both times scoring a total of 14 runs and they ended up beating the Red Sox 15-9. Just remarkable.

I cannot remember the last time the Yankees were in first place and the Red Sox were in last place but as of this morning, that’s how things stand.

It was, indeed, a beautiful day for baseball.

Division titles and inconsolable infants

When I picked up the Little Man from school yesterday, we went through the usual preliminaries (“What did you do at school today?” “Play toys! Outside!”) and then asked him a very important question: Do you want to watch the Yankee game with Daddy tonight?

So at 7pm, we headed upstairs to watch the Yanks. About the same time, the Little Miss seemed to get somewhat cranky, but Kelly was about to feed her so I figured she’d calm down once she had some milk in her belly. Of course, the Yankees game was rain-delayed and so we watched the beginning of the Orioles/Red Sox game. On our walk home from school, I’d made sure to teach the Little Man to say “Go Yankees!” and being a quick learner, he would stand on our bed during the Red Sox game shouting “Go Yankees! Go Yankees!”

Meanwhile, I could hear the Little Miss crying downstairs. Not an all out screaming cry, but a steady, idling cry.

Early in the Red Sox game, the Orioles hit a home run and I cheered, throwing both hands up in the air and shouting, “Yeah!” The Little Man replicated this perfectly. He is the Rich Little1 of his daddy’s sports celebratory outbursts. Thereafter, no matter what the play was, the Little Man would do a little celebratory dance.

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Notes

  1. I wonder how many people will get this reference?

A fair-weather fan?

Yankees

I was accused, yesterday, of being a fair-weather fan because I complained that I was giving up on last night’s game and heading off to bed.  I surprised by the accusation.  No one with whom I work would ever consider me a fair-weather fan, but since I couldn’t sleep last night, I gave the matter some thought.

I gave up on the game in frustration.  I think this is a natural emotion, the more so when you care about something that is completely out of your control.  You can only shout at your TV so many times (the results are the same, regardless).  Frustration, to me, is an emotion that shows you care.  If the poor showing by Yankees pitching didn’t frustrate me, I’d see it as a sign that it was something I just didn’t care much about.  But I love baseball and I have been a lifelong Yankees fan, despite nearly everyone around me hating the team.  There is nothing wrong with frustration.

I also complained that I didn’t have the energy for tonight’s game and my accuser took exception to that.  What kind of fan am I if I don’t support my team, whole hog into the wee hours of the night?  I suppose, under those circumstances, I am a fair-weather fan.  I’ve found as I have gotten older that it is more difficult for me to stay up late, and these games often go past midnight on the East Coast.  This difficulty, however, has nothing to do with being a fan of the team.  I have difficulty staying up to midnight on any night.  Even so, I claimed I didn’t have the energy to watch tonight’s game, and in part, I think I meant I didn’t have the heart to watch it.  This goes hand-in-hand with frustration, I think.

But there are other, more practical reasons why I won’t be watching tonight’s game.  Wednesday night’s are my writer’s group nights and at the moment, writing takes a priority over baseball.  If that makes me a fair-weather fan, then so be it.  I can live with that.  The bottom line is that fan though I am, baseball doesn’t always come first.