I went out to Brooklyn last night after work to watch the game and cook dinner with my old friend Anthony Pick, aka Piccalini, aka Tony Pickles. Anthony and I went to school together and have made many a delicious meal together over the years. Well, we had another good one last night (heirloom tomato salad, basil and tomato sausage ring, home fried potatoes, corn on the cobb and a peach crumble with mint) but no game, as it was pouring in the Motor City. I left Brooklyn after 10:30 and didn’t get home until just after midnight. Before hitting the sack I figured I check the scores. That’s when I found out the Yanks and Tigers were actually playing. Top of the fifth, Tigers 6 Yanks 3. Yup, they waited four hours to start the game. Impressively, there was still a good-sized crowd, one that didn’t leave until the final out.
I settled in, watched the Yanks quickly tie the score, and then waited up until 3:30 a.m. when Carlos Guillen ended it in extra innings with a three-run home run against Sean Henn. Final: Tigers 9, Yanks 6. With the Red Sox sweeping a double-header and the Mariners winning again, this will surely go down as one of the heartbreaking losses of the year. The only reason I wasn’t more upset when it finally ended was because I was too tired, and, after all, Sean Henn was pitching.
“Whether I’m on the mound or not, going that many innings, till 4 in the morning, it’s tough,” said Henn, who also lost in extra innings on Monday in Anaheim. “But it’s that much tougher to swallow when I’m the one walking off the mound and they’re celebrating at home.”
Alex Rodriguez homered but Magglio Ordonez, the other only viable candidate for AL MVP, also went deep and had four hits. The final one, against Henn, was a check-swing, excuse-me single, which helps explain why dude is hitting just about .360. Andy Phillips made a wonderful, reaching catch to save the game while Mariano Rivera was pitching in the 10th; Bobby Abreu, who entered the game late as a pinch-hitter, smacked the ball hard twice with nothing to show for it. Most notably, Jorge Posada was run by home plate umpire Bob Davidson for arguing balls and strikes. Davidson was calling strikes on pitches six inches off the outside corner all night. He did a lousy job, though to be fair, he was equally lousy for both sides (before Ordonez’s check swing hit against Henn, Mags was barking at Davidson too). “His strike zone was a mystery – on both sides,” Joe Torre said after the game. Posada added, “He should be answering the questions, not me.”
Probably not a lot of good rest for these Yankees last night as this was a bitter pill to swallow. But they have to pick themselves off the mat and show some fortitude tonight by winning and not letting this thing spiral out of control.