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Garcia Stands Tall Versus Orioles as Yanks Stand Pat at Deadline

During the winter, Freddy Garcia’s signing was looked upon as a stop gap measure intended to tide the Yankees over until reinforcements could be acquired in the summer. However, when the clock struck 4:00 PM, all was quiet on the trade front, meaning the veteran right hander will now be counted upon to help the Yankees reach the finish line. If Garcia continues to pitch as well as he did today, the Yankees should be just fine.

Leading up to the trade deadline, which passed during the eighth inning, there had been a lot of speculation about the Yankees acquiring another pitcher. However, lost amid the trade talk was the fact that the Yankees currently lead the American League in ERA+, and a big part of that has been Freddy Garcia. In fact, by limiting the Orioles to two runs over six innings, the soft tossing right hander recorded his 14th quality start, and eighth in his last ninth games. Along with fellow veteran retread Bartolo Colon, Garcia has not only helped hold down the fort, but lessened the need for reinforcements.

Garcia’s quality outing was not only a symbolic comfort for the Yankees, but a vital part of winning the series finale against the Orioles. One day after scoring a combined 25 runs in a doubleheader sweep, the Yankees’ bats were a little sluggish in the early going. Over the first three innings, the Bronx Bombers squandered two bases loaded opportunities, but the third time proved to be a charm in the fourth. After Eric Chavez walked to lead off the frame, Russell Martin hit a routine groundball right at Baltimore shortstop J.J. Hardy. It should have been Martin’s 16th double play of the season, but instead, the ball rolled under Hardy’s glove and set the stage for Brett Gardner’s bases clearing triple two batters later.

The Yankees wound up scoring four runs in the fourth, but they also lost their shortstop. One inning earlier, Derek Jeter was struck on the right hand by a pitch from Jake Arieta, but only when his next at bat rolled around was he forced to exit the game. Because of a lack depth on the bench, Francisco Cervelli was sent to play second base for the first time in his professional career, which must have had Brian Cashman reaching for his phone, if only for a moment. However, X-rays on Jeter’s finger were negative, and the Yankees dodged a bullet (also known as Eduardo Nunez’ throwing arm).

Following the four run outburst, the Yankees’ offense went dormant, but the combination of Garcia and three relievers was more than enough to lock down the game. In particular, David Robertson was summoned with two outs in the seventh to retire Hardy, who came to the plate as the tying run. Then, as an encore, Robertson plowed through the middle of the Orioles lineup in the eighth by striking out the side. All that was left was for Mariano Rivera to polish off the game and the homestand, which the Yankees finished at 7-3.


1 Bruce Markusen   ~  Jul 31, 2011 6:28 pm

A nice win today, and I'm not that upset about losing out on the overrated Ubaldo Jimenez, but it bothers me that the Yankees have to use Francisco Cervelli at second base because of the idiocy of having 13 pitchers. Luckily it didn't cost them the game.

I see no justification for EVER having 13 pitchers. One doubleheader does not justify giving more than half your roster spaces to pitchers. Ludicrous.

2 Mr OK Jazz Tokyo   ~  Jul 31, 2011 7:00 pm

[1] Agreed! Terrible roster management. Sadly, that is the way baseball is these days..

I'm surprised they made no moves before the deadline. Is CashMoney banking (hah!) on either a "consistent" Nova or a comeback from Hughes? The "O" is there but I just don't see the Yankees beating either Boston or Philly in a 7-game series now..am I selling short the Buddha-rific skills of Bartolo?

Actually, the real challenge is of course Boston with their lineup..Philly or SanFran can't hit..

3 MSM35   ~  Jul 31, 2011 7:10 pm

I have heard of clock management, game management and a peanut stand and a rubber band but roster management not so much.

4 RIYank   ~  Jul 31, 2011 7:10 pm

[2] I think yes, Cash is betting that one or the other of his youngsters will have a good late summer. That's why we have 13 pitchers.

As to beating any of those teams in a 7-game series, I'm sure Cash's view is the Sabermetric standard: the post-season is a crap shoot.

5 Mr OK Jazz Tokyo   ~  Jul 31, 2011 7:20 pm

[4] I do NOT believe the post-season is a crap-shoot..that implies way too much luck.

6 Just Fair   ~  Jul 31, 2011 7:34 pm

The best post-season scenario would be CC, 4 days of torrential rain, CC, 4 days of torrential rain, CC, 4 days of torrential rain,CC, 4 days of torrential rain,CC, 4 days of torrential rain, CC, 4 days of torrential rain, etc..... ; )

7 Mr OK Jazz Tokyo   ~  Jul 31, 2011 7:56 pm

[6] Will light an incense stick at the local shrine and pray for inter-continental rain! Also, prayers for Josh Beckett to go googly-gaga at a Leann Rimes concert and then be unable to pitch in the playoffs. Lackey and Wakefield, please!

8 yankintexas   ~  Jul 31, 2011 7:57 pm

[6] Well maybe if this Soriano/Robertson/Rivera thing takes hold they can squeeze out some wins in the non-CC starts.

9 Alex Belth   ~  Jul 31, 2011 8:25 pm

Be curious what the waiver line will bring.

10 Mr OK Jazz Tokyo   ~  Jul 31, 2011 8:32 pm

[8] SoRoMo!

11 Mattpat11   ~  Jul 31, 2011 10:11 pm

I'm glad the Yankees did nothing. First of all, there was nothing *to* do. Also, I'm perversely curious to see how they fuck up The Killer Bs. There's the tried and true "Arbitrary innings limit that seems to take effect just as the pitcher is gaining some momentum as a starter, followed by lurching from the rotation to the bullpen with no apparent plan until you eventually create a middle reliever."

But I have faith in them to do something even *more* stupid if they put their minds to it.

12 Eddie Lee Whitson KO   ~  Jul 31, 2011 10:32 pm

I love that the Pirates were buyers at the deadline and the Yanks stood down. Just thrilled with what we've gotten from Garcia and Colon.

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