"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Let’s Try That Again

Facing Cliff Lee wasn’t much fun for anyone other than Nick Swisher last night. Facing Felix Hernandez doesn’t seem likely to be much more pleasant. In his last three starts, King Felix has posted this line:

26 2/3 IP*, 14 H, 5 R, 3 BB, 26 K, 1 HR, 1.69 ERA, 0.64 WHIP, 8.67 K/BB

*That’s one out shy of three complete games, in case you didn’t notice, but only one of those starts turned into a complete game as the Mariners lost his last 3-2 in 13 innings.

Four starts ago, Felix got lit up by the red-hot Rangers, but his two starts before that both saw him go eight innings and allow just one run (with 16 total Ks), and in his last nine starts he’s posted a 2.62 ERA and allowed just three home runs. Of course, the Mariners have gone 3-6 in those nine games thanks to either poor bullpen support, poor run support, or both.

Javier Vazquez wasn’t sharp his last time out against his old team in Arizona, but in his four starts prior to that he posted a 2.25 ERA and 0.79 WHIP, lasting exactly seven innings each time out, his only loss coming when the Yankee bats got shutout by Hisanori Takahashi and company. Dating back to May 12, he’s 5-3 with a 3.12 ERA, and 0.98 WHIP in eight starts and one relief appearance.

Brett Gardner remains out of the lineup but is available to pinch-run and play defense. Colin Curtis starts in left and bats eighth. The rest of the lineup is the same as last night’s.

Categories:  Cliff Corcoran  Game Thread

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1 Raf   ~  Jun 30, 2010 7:50 pm

Nice day out, is that why there isn't anyone here? :)

2 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:01 pm

Tumbleweeds... wow.

Watching the struggle that is Javi Vasquez out on the mound, while King Felix cuts through our lineup like a hot knife through butter is like having pieces of office furniture pulled out of my ass, slowly, one at a time, with the really painful jerks occurring at any moment, with only the overall warning.


3 rbj   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:05 pm

I'm finally here. Looks like Score Truck is stuck in traffic.

OK, so does Girardi start Cliff Lee in the All Star Game (78 Ks, 5 BBs) in hopes of helping to sign him next year?

4 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:07 pm

The Yankees rotation was due for a collective slump, and it doesn't seem as if the offense is capable of compensating.

I really hope Cashman is working on a deal because this lineup is really a paper tiger right now.

5 Just Fair   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:08 pm

This is the 2nd time I've watched a game in my basement. This is the 2nd time I've seen the Yanks' pitching shit the bed. Thanks, AJ. Thanks, Javy. Screw you basement. Is there a Banter night at the stadium I wasn't invited to. : (

6 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:08 pm

[3] Why not?

At least get some use out of that gig.

The Yankees have obviously done whatever they can to make Cliff Lee feel at home, including dinner with CC, and then a night of fine, resistance-free romance with the Yankees lineup until the 9th, let's go the whole mile.

Freaking Al and Michael in the booth - ice pick meet ear.

And would they shut the fuck up about how bad the Mariners are offensively? They're beating our Got Damn brains in, so repeating that endlessly is getting insanely annoying.

7 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:11 pm

If Tex is every going to get started, tonight would be an ideal time.

8 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:11 pm

Personally, I think they are on an emotional letdown after all the hub bub of playing against stupid Joe Torre, which is pretty frustrating.

And now mlb.tv is crushing my brain with ear-splitting decibel levels of that damn Reebok ad, and then a run of those ridiculous Yahoo ads.

9 Just Fair   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:12 pm

If that ball doesn't stick under the wall Teix is dead meat at 2nd.

10 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:17 pm

I wonder how many times this season Arod and Tex have had hits in the same inning?

11 rbj   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:19 pm

[10] Isn't that illegal?

12 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:21 pm

What a lifeless inning.

13 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:22 pm

The fucking Reebok ad again. I don't know if you guys are aware of the utter abuse that has been the in between innings ad assault on mlb.tv all year.

That was brutal. Somehow this is even more painful knowing that the two walks in the first inning? Weren't.

They were just manifestations of the absurdity of having Cowboy Joe and Angel Hernandez on the same crew. Not only were those pitches strikes, but Joe West calls them strikes 1000 times out of 1000 times.

14 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:27 pm

That's it, Javy. Throw another fucking frisbee, while Hernandez fires bullets.

It's a big office, apparently. Plenty of furniture left.

15 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:30 pm

That's embarassing.

16 rbj   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:35 pm

I think I might leave to do something more exciting, like watch paint dry.

17 JeremyM   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:38 pm

[16] The grass seems to be growing at a good clip, I'm going to go take a peek at that myself....

18 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:39 pm

That was a good pitch.
[6] Really? Al's far and away my favorite guy in the booth. I could listen to him all day and night.

19 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:39 pm

I've been doing some flight experiments. I discovered that empty water cooler bottles make great punted projectiles.

20 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:44 pm

At what point do the Yankees realize they can't have Cervelli playing everyday? If Cashman can't get another DH, then the Yankees need tro consider promoting Romine.

Jeter's AB continue to be so weak.

21 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:46 pm

[20] I have to think he'll improve next season. He'll figure out what adjustment(s) he needs to make or whatever.

22 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:47 pm

[18] I think a number of people around here think that about Leiter, and I find it astounding.

---- there's that GD Reebok ad again - - -

I've said it before, I think Al is ridiculously inarticulate. Yes, he goes after a big word now and again, and inevitably it ends up being out of his league.

He says unbelievably stupid, random things, Kaye responds and Leiter than says something that directly contradicts the first thing he said.

Leiter and Kaye yak yak yak and totally ignore important event after important event throughout a game. I don't want to hear about their dinners. I don't care and they're not funny.

Now O'Neill, everything he says is gold. Even when Kaye is talking about Paulie's eating habits. Because O'Neill is inherently entertaining.

I find O'Neill's insights into hitting are incisive, original, informative and on point.

I find Leiter's "look inside the game" to consistently be the exact opposite. I hate him.

It's hard for me not to think that Leiter has people fooled, because he affects the intonation of an actual smart person and uses the words that a smart person might use. But those words are all kinds of out of order and misplaced, and I firmly believe that when I listen for the thoughts being expressed, those thoughts are stupid.

There are smart ballplayers. I think Leiter just *sounds* like one.

23 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:47 pm

[20] Of course, it could be a matter of injury.

24 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:48 pm

Are people high?

Ken Griffey Jr. not a first ballot hall of famer?

Best player I saw for a whole bunch of years. It's a slam fucking dunk.

25 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:53 pm

Odd. Javy's last inning was his best, by far.

Only the Yanks have made the M's look like worldbeaters, but you have to give Javy some credit for that effort in the sixth inning of a game he's really struggled through.

26 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:55 pm

[22] Huh. That's weird.

First of all, I think you have a bit of a false premise here, which is that his intelligence or supposed intelligence is his appeal and further that use of "big words" is most people's metric for intelligence.

I do like the fact that he's intelligent but that's not his primary appeal for me. Rather, I like his enthusiasm and his sincerity. He's passionate about the game (in the way that Hernandez is) and brings a rare kind of humanity to the broadcast. I feel he's fabulous at presenting the game both from the perspective of a fan of the game AND from the perspective of a player. That's really hard to do.

I find his attention to detail is uncommon, as is his ability to make a point and then try to demonstrate it with evidence. Also, he is ready to concede valid points when Kay makes them.

I guess in short, he's the guy I feel most comfortable with. Paul is all right but frankly he doesn't bring the passion for the game that Hernandez and Leiter do. He's way too ready to let players off the hook and tentative about criticizing them.

I just feel that of all the people in the booth, Leiter takes the game most seriously.

Plus, he is intelligent and I just like his sense of humor and personality.

27 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:56 pm

[21] I don't think Cervelli is anything more than a defensive backup.

28 OldYanksFan   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:57 pm

Unless our team scores 5 or more runs, I can;t blame the pitching. I guess we won't see any good ABs until the 9th inning.

29 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:57 pm

At what point does Tex production start to resemble is baseball card.

This Yankee lineup really looks vulnerable to good pitching.

30 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:58 pm

[27] No, sorry, I meant Derek.
Amazing we could mix the two up, no?

31 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:58 pm

Pretty soon, we are going to have to wonder how this team is in first place.

32 williamnyy23   ~  Jun 30, 2010 8:59 pm

[30] They are both producing about the same lately.

33 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:09 pm


34 rbj   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:09 pm

ugh. Might as well be 50-0 the way the team is hitting.

35 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:15 pm

Zero runs after six innings.

36 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:15 pm

[26] Obviously we're not going to agree on this, but there's some weird stuff in that post.

Off the top, I'll say that my most basic objection to Al is that I think he tries too hard to be smooth, and it ends up making him throw word after word on top of each other, and some of those words get strung together into not just silly "thoughts," but "thoughts" that Al, himself, doesn't believe in.

But back to your post. First, you say that my premise is that people like Al because they think he's intelligent. Then, you move on to mentioning that you like that he's intelligent, and refer to Al being intelligent as some sort of given. Whether it's the primary reason you like him or not, being that his lack of intelligence was a main subject of my post, to just state "Al is intelligent" as a given is kind of rude. Which you do twice in your post.

Now intelligence aside, the question of whether or not a broadcaster is articulate would seem to be a pretty central element of any question of quality.

I find his "enthusiasm" spastic and distracting.

I find that he rarely identifies the small moments that the game turns on because both he and Kay at times don't seem to be paying attention to the game.

You know what I respect? Kim Jones stopped freaking talking when Saunders laced that ball. Because she knew no one wanted to hear anything at that moment.

Anyway, in short, I fucking hate him and you like him. Fine.

For my money, O'Neill and Cone are the best guys to have in the booth with Kay. You obviously disagree.

This game sucks.

37 OldYanksFan   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:23 pm
38 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:26 pm

Truthfully, as much as Lee and Hernandez have raped the Yankees' lineup, these were two awful matchups.

I don't subscribe to any overall ruination one should attach to Hughes' extra rest, but a nasty lefty like Lee against Hughes on excess rest, with Hughes being off his game in his last few starts, anyway - not a good matchup.

King Felix, who has apparently gone extra nasty in his outings leading up to this one against Vasquez - not a good matchup.

Unbelievably frustrating, particularly to go like lambs against a team that has been overwhelmingly awful on the road, but I knew there was a reason I was not optimistic looking forward to this series.

39 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:28 pm

[36] :)

Cutting to the chase, you find his enthusiasm spastic and distracting and I find it heartwarming. That's what the whole thing turns on.

As to missing key moments in the game and admiring that Kim shut the fuck up, yes, you're probably right about the former and definitely right about the latter.

As to whether he is intelligent or not, he is what he is. He is clearly intelligent. The thing is, there are many different kinds of intelligence. You find him lacking in a particular kind, incisive analysis, maybe or original insights or whatever. But that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about the spastic enthusiasm, the engagement. He has a lively mind, articulate or not. He has a curiosity about him that's rare in baseball broadcasting.

A lot of what you consider inarticulate I think comes from the fact that he's thinking as he goes along rather than spouting platitudes. I appreciate that.

Anyway, you're right, we won't agree but I'm not interested in agreement. I'm interested in mutual understanding. This needn't be a zero-sum argument.

40 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:29 pm


41 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:29 pm

[37] If ever there was an article that makes having NESPN Boston make sense, instead of just NESPN ESPN, that article was it.

"Polishing the machine," good gravy.

Something else was being polished there, I suspect.

42 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:29 pm

That's Swisher's ball!

43 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:32 pm

Yo merlock & weeping, let's all hug and get a good thang going here, OK?

No need to comment on the game..

44 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:32 pm

Are we having fun yet?

45 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:33 pm

[43] Oh, dear Lord!

46 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:38 pm

[39] I'm certainly not trying to convince you out of enjoying him. I'm glad someone does. It makes my ears bleed that much less.

Oh, that's just fucking unbelievable. I can't comment further on Leiter right now, because the fact that Robbie's snafu just led to two more runs makes me feel like talking about Leiter is beyond my capacity at this moment.

The only thing I will say further on this, because it's simple, is that some of my feelings on this are informed by a bunch of radio I did over a couple of years. I've been in that seat, and I'm thinking along with Al when I listen to him. I remember that feeling of it being almost like a downhill ski run, where from the moment you're out of the gate, you're hoping you make it down the hill in one piece. And there were a number of moments where I felt my wits and access to not only vocabulary, but also reflexive proper usage, saved my bacon. And saved it in a way that I don't think a listener could even hear that inside I had just gone through a lurch and a moment of vertigo. Al doesn't come out of those spirals, in my opinion, but that's already more words than I promised at the start of this paragraph.

47 Just Fair   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:41 pm

I would have preferred Leiter to go away instead of Cone. But I like Al, too. He enjoys doing what he does. I like that he gets excited talking about baseball. A spaz who is talking about something else is a whole other matter.

48 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:41 pm

[45] C'mon weeping, give an over-worked, humidity-attacked jazz fan some props..can't we all just get along? :) Clearly, there ain't no love in the heart of the lineup, now... at least the BoSox are losing..

49 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:41 pm

This is really amazing, and it's going to come as a surprise to some of the guys on the team, but they didn't actually win the World Series when they beat the Dodgers 2 out of 3.


50 rbj   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:42 pm

[43] Great, now there are parts of the 1980s I have to forget. Again.

All those years in college gone to waste.

51 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:43 pm

[48] I'm mostly beyond frustrated that I wasted my time watching these two horse bleep games. I really should be getting reading/work done, and there's nothing like being irresponsible and unhappy, It SUCKS!!!

: (

52 Just Fair   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:44 pm

My uneducated opinion tell me each time the Yanks come off a super charged series they are drained to the bone. Or maybe they always wind up facing the opponents top 2 pitchers. WTF!

53 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:46 pm

[50] No doubt. That was like being rick rolled!

[47] That's also what I'm talking about. They haven't really been guilty this game, but I find that the Kay-Leiter conversations sometimes stray in this direction.

WB Mason postgame. Hahaha. Yeah, that's a can't miss.

54 Just Fair   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:47 pm

On the bright side this probably pisses off Torre just a tad more.

55 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:47 pm

[52] Definitely both. Not a great combination, particularly matching an off-his-game Hughes and Javy against these two pitchers.

56 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:50 pm

[50] Hey, be thankful, I could have started with this..


57 Just Fair   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:55 pm

[56] I made my wife watch Footloose the other night well past midnight. She had never seen it. She could not take more than 15 minutes. lol. Gotta love those 80's chicks. : ) These last 2 games fuckin' sucked. OY and BOLLOCKS.

58 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:57 pm

[56] At least with that one, if you can get your brain into a place where there is no such thing as embarrassment, self-awareness, melodrama, or any words like "overwrought," you can actually enjoy that song.

Your first one was just cruel.

Yes, these two games have been pure ass.

59 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jun 30, 2010 9:59 pm

Hahahahahahah, to all of you!

60 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Jun 30, 2010 10:02 pm

[57] Mrs. Jazz is a few years younger than me, her time in the US was late 90s so she also had to be introduced to 80s classics..she thought "Vacation" was blah, and didn't laugh once at "Teen Wolf" on YouTube..then attacked my hypocracy as a film snob that would watch Teen Wolf!

61 Just Fair   ~  Jun 30, 2010 10:16 pm

[60] We both loved that one. : ) They just don't make 'em like that any more. ha.

62 jjmerlock   ~  Jun 30, 2010 10:21 pm

[60] For some reason I got Michael "Kaye" (like Danny Kaye) stuck in my head earlier tonight, but I thought I should remind you that it's "hypocrisy," not "hypocracy."

I always think it must be like someone who is allergic to practicing medicine when I see the latter spelling, but then again, I was so miserable at Latin that trying Greek was out of the question.

63 randym77   ~  Jun 30, 2010 11:05 pm

Al Leiter is probably my favorite sportscaster. He doesn't have a lot of polish, but that's what I like about him. He can be bluntly honest, in a way that you don't usually hear in the booth. Perhaps because he doesn't know any better.

For example, talking about how vindictive Joe West is (don't look at him funny, or the strike zone will start changing, and not in your favor). Explaining the unspoken rules of baseball (outfielders must give a "courtesy chase" even to the most obvious no-doubter, or the pitcher will be pissed, pitchers should never criticize the defense behind them, no matter how awful it is). And I really enjoy his insights into pitching.

That said, I think he is talking more than he used to. I remember one time during his first year when I thought he'd left. He didn't say a word for 20 minutes. He was there, but since he didn't have anything to say, he shut up. I wish more broadcasters would do that.

64 Dimelo   ~  Jul 1, 2010 12:06 am

Man, this game really sucked today. I hate how the Yankees bullpen keeps turning the Yankees being down by 2/3 runs to turn off the lights.

In other news....
....it's midnight, July 1st, does anyone know where Lebron is? Let's go Knickerbockers!

65 weeping for brunnhilde   ~  Jul 1, 2010 12:21 am

[63] I think he shuts up more when there's three of 'em in the booth instead of just two.

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver