"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Money Earnin’

The Braves batted in the bottom of the first inning when the subway emerged from the ground at Dyckman Street. In the top of the inning, the Yanks had put two runners on base but Alex Rodriguez popped out and Robinson Cano grounded out. I was on my way home from the gym and tuned in to John Sterling on the radio. By the time the train reached 231st Street the Braves had loaded the bases and Sterling proved to be so inept–botching several calls–that I angrily switched to the Braves station. Just in time for a bases clearing double.

That was the major damage against C.C. Sabathia, who pitched well enough. The Braves added an insurance run in the seventh and the Yanks didn’t do much of anything against  Mike Minor, who was excellent.

A one-out single by Derek Jeter in the eighth chased Minor from the game and Curtis Granderson slapped a base hit to left field against Jonny Venters who then walked Teixeira. Bases loaded for Rodriguez, hitless on the night and hapless this season with the bases loaded. If there were any Yankee fans confident in Rodriguez to come through with a big hit I’d like to know who they were.

The first pitch, a 95 mph fastball, was low and in the dirt. The next pitch, a slider, had a sharp break but fell well short of the plate. Two-and-zero, bases loaded, and still no confidence, right? Double play, right? The next pitch, another fastball, another one in the dirt. Venters threw a fastball over the plate for a strike and then Rodriguez had a decent pitch to hit but was late and fouled it out of play. This is what we’ve been talking about for weeks, Rodriguez fouling off fat, juicy pitches. The next fastball was inside and Rodriguez fouled it off his left foot.

The crowd, a noisy combination of home town fans and invading Yankee fans, made itself known.

And then he got another fastball. Rodriguez was ready, turned on it and hit a line drive to left field. It was a pea and looked to be a sure double. But it was high enough to clear the fence, good for a grand slam. A kid in the front row made like he was going to catch the ball, then wisely turned to the side at the last moment when he recognized how fast the ball was moving. The boy caught the ball in his hat. Smart kid.

The game was tied as Rodriguez also tied the Iron Horse for the most grand slam’s in major league history. We knew it was going to happen sometime.

Go fuggin’ figure.

Robbie Cano looped a single to center field and after a pitching change and ball one, Nick Swisher pounded a home run over the 390 foot mark in right center field.

Clay Rapada, who the wife calls “Ramapo” worked around a one-out walk in the eighth and held the Braves down.

“Why do you call him ‘Ramapo’?” I asked.

“Because that’s what I called him that time the other week, remember? I don’t remember why I came up with it but I did and it’s sticking.”

The wife knows.

In the ninth, Rafael Soriano faced the two-three-four batters. Martin Prado hit an 0-2 pitch, with “plenty of overspin,” according to Kenny Singleton on the YES broadcast, between short and third. Rodriguez took a few steps to his left, fielded the ball on a high hop and threw Prado out at first. Prado returned to the dugout and banged his helmet. Brian McCann was next, fell behind, and whiffed on an 84 mph breaking ball. Sharp, over the plate, nasty.

Soriano bent over before he pitched, as if he was bowing to the hitter. It reminded me of the bit that Mike Mussina used to do but Soriano faced home plate.

Dan Uggla, 5-11 lifetime against Soriano, popped the first pitch foul then took two pitches for balls before ripping a fastball foul. The crowd stood and cheered–oh, those Yankee fans. Some of the crowd booed too I suppose but they could not be heard. The next pitch was another crisp breaking ball. Uggla swung over it and the Braves, who had runners on base in every inning but one, will have a long night as they try to figure out how this one got away.

Final Score: Yanks 6, Braves 4.

For the Bombers, that’s another series in the plus column. Some nice wins, this one, the second two games against the Mets, and guess who sits alone in first place?

Categories:  1: Featured  Game Recap  Yankees

Tags:  Alex Rodriguez  Nick Swisher

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1 Mattpat11   ~  Jun 12, 2012 9:29 pm

Rays lose

2 Ara Just Fair   ~  Jun 12, 2012 10:46 pm

Good stuff. Some young kid caught Alex's salami in his hat, though. It was neat catch. Glad Soriano is throwing well, that's for damn sure.

3 kenboyer made me cry   ~  Jun 12, 2012 10:48 pm

Great win! Yankees are good but not perfect; Rays, O's, Jays, and Sox look not so good. As a fan, we sometimes forget the long length of the season and how being just a little bit better means success at the end. The starting pitching has been great the last two weeks, and while CC was not dominant tonight, he certainly fought all game one batter at a time to keep the Yankees in it. Congratulations to Arod in tying Gehrig's GS record. Bittersweet for me, as those long standing records are pillars of baseball IMO.

And while Arod's shot might have had the trajectory of a pee stream. He hit a pea.

4 Yankee Mama   ~  Jun 12, 2012 10:50 pm

Ramapo, of course! Love it! Ramapo even came up in dinner conversation this evening. Kismet! Oh, and the game went well too.

5 thelarmis   ~  Jun 12, 2012 11:38 pm

extra special for me with my yankees winning in my adopted city! looking forward to watching the last coupla innings on the dvr.

man, i wish i could go to the game tomorrow... and, yes, us yankee fans were LOUD last night and standing up quite a bit! : )

anybody here know if they're going to the Yanks-Braves game next Monday at The Stadium (6/18)? i'll be there!

6 Chris in Sydney   ~  Jun 12, 2012 11:42 pm

I had no idea there were so many Yankee fans in Atlanta. Sure didn't feel that way when I lived in the South. Of course, that was mostly during the Great Drought.

7 thelarmis   ~  Jun 12, 2012 11:50 pm

Atlanta is filled with mostly northern transplants, like me. TONS of yankee fans in this city! : )

8 phil_bonanno   ~  Jun 13, 2012 1:52 am

great win, nights like this are worth 2 wins I reckon. Next stop - 20 wins over .500.

9 Chyll Will   ~  Jun 13, 2012 4:59 am

Ramapo is a town in Rockland Countyon the left side of the Hudson and bordering Bergen County in New Jersey; the Ramapo Valley is very forest-like and hilly. Very rural-middle class from what I've seen. Their high school sometimes played mine, which is a lot of territory to cover. They had good baseball from what I remember. I can easily see how you can get Ramapo from Rapada, in fact it's rather butch (I also think of Rambo when I see the signs; not all that far-fetched if you've been through there since some areas are reminiscent of the setting of First Blood.

10 Sliced Bread   ~  Jun 13, 2012 6:47 am

2) yep, kid snatched it in his lid. Here's an update from the NY Post:

Waiting outside the Yankees clubhouse for Rodriguez was Randy Kearns, a 15-year-old from North Carolina who caught the laser in his Yankee hat.
Kearns turned the ball over to Rodriguez, who gave Kearns and his friend, Hunter Whitcher autographed balls, a Yankee jersey and a bat.
“He volunteered the game ball back, that’s pretty generous,’’ Rodriguez said of the Kearns, a Yankees fan who made the five-hour drive to see his first Yankees game

11 OldYanksFan   ~  Jun 13, 2012 6:55 am

OK... we're a tad more than 1/3rd through the season.
But you haven't been following... have no idea of the standings.
Here's what I tell you.

Pineda has been out the entire season.
Joba has been out the entire season.
Mo has been out, all but 8 IP.
DRob has been out, all but 14 IP.
Gritner has been out, all but 9 GP, replaced by Dewayne Wise.

The highest OPS on the team is Cano, at .885
ARod has not looked good... his OPS right at the .800 mark.
Teix has struggled... his OPS below the .800 mark.
Swisher has struggled... his OPS below the .800 mark.
Derek was SUPERMAN in April, with a 1.012 OPS!!!!!!!!!!...
but followed with a .692 OPS in May, and a .589 OPS so far in June.

The ERAs of CC, Nova and Hughes: 3.80, 4.64 and 4.76 (AL average: 4.04)
Freddy has been totally useless, and is the BP mop-up man.
Our best Pitcher is 40 yr. old Andy Pettitte.

As a team, we have been hitting historically bad with RISP.
Ibanez is our primary LFer.
Melkdud Cabrera has the 2nd best BA is baseball and a .935 OPS.

OK.... that's the reality.
So.... where are we in the standings?
Is there any hope????

12 OldYanksFan   ~  Jun 13, 2012 6:57 am

“He volunteered the game ball back, that’s pretty generous,’’ Rodriguez said of the Kearns, a Yankees fan who made the five-hour drive to see his first Yankees game...

Jeez ARod... throw the kid 10 Grand.....

13 RIYank   ~  Jun 13, 2012 7:18 am

Kenny's line while A-Rod was batting in the eighth:
"I think it's interesting that the Atlanta fans would use the tomahawk chop as a defensive weapon."

14 OldYanksFan   ~  Jun 13, 2012 8:13 am

Bryce Harper, Rookie, at 19: 150 AB, .307, .390, .553, .943, 7 HRs.
This kid is the closest thing to Mickey Mantle we have ever seen.
He has got it all.

The Baseball Cube rates on a scale of 100:
Speed: 71
Contact: 50
Patience: 95
Batting: 96
Power: 91

Those are sick numbers, and probably LOW on the POWER rating.

15 OldYanksFan   ~  Jun 13, 2012 8:15 am

Wow.... we are on a 15-4 run!

16 OldYanksFan   ~  Jun 13, 2012 8:20 am

By the way... is it physically possible for a ball to reach the seats any faster than ARods shot?

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