We know the old cliche–heck, when it comes to sports and sports writing, sometimes everything feels like a cliche–“He pitched just well enough to win,” or “He pitched good enough to lose.” Last night, Johan Santana, vexed by bad luck on a bad team, pitched just good enough to lose. Again. Meanwhile, CC Sabathia, a good pitcher on a good team, pitched poorly, but well enough to keep his team in the game.
Mike Mussina used to say that the best pitchers win half their starts. Mussina did that almost precisely over 18 seasons, winning 270 of his 536 career starts. Mussina understood the finicky role luck plays in wins and losses. But he also knew that, over time, a pitcher’s luck tends to even out. He deserved 270 victories, and that is what he got.
When the smoke cleared–presumably from all the fireworks that explode after a White Sox hits a home run–the Yanks survived a wild night of offense, 12-9. A good thing, as the Rays edged-out the Red Sox. Once again, the Yanks and Rays are tied for first place.
Mark Teixeira left the game early and is listed as day-to-day with a bone bruise.
[Picture by Bags]