"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Get a Little Closer (Don’t Be Shy)

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So it’s the bottom of the 7th last night and Andy Pettitte has just thrown his 106th pitch, a breaking ball that Nate McLouth won’t chase. Then Andy’s got the ball back from Chris Stewart, glove over his face looking it at the sign, nodding. He’s in rhythm. There’s one out in the inning and it’s 2-2 on McLouth. Pettitte throws a couple of more breaking balls–one inside, another one low–nodding, in time, working. This is what he does. Might not be much longer, but this is a man at work.

McLouth doesn’t bite and draws the walk.┬áThat’s the end of Pettitte’s night. Just an inning before a double play got him out of trouble and Andy pumped his fist. He gave up a bunch of hits but kept the team in the game. A prol plying his trade.

Couple of innings later the Yanks had a two-run lead, thanks to a home run by Robinson Cano, a triple by Curtis Granderson and an infield single by Lyle Overbay. And so now here’s Mo, emptying the tank. The Yanks have been riding him hard and there’s something thrilling about watching the old guy respond. He got weak ground balls from the first two hitters, and gracefully ran to first base to cover the bag on both outs. Then, there’s this bastard McLouth again, down to his last strike again. Mo tries to backdoor him and throws the ball to the spot but McLouth guesses along with him, squares the pitch up and hits it over Brett Gardner’s head in center field.

Okay, so Mo gets ahead of Brian Roberts too. Down to the last strike. Throws a cutter high but right where Stewart wants it and Roberts is waiting, gets on top of it and drives the ball to right scoring McLouth. One run game. Manny “the Future is Now!” Machado, who could be Mo’s son is next. Mo does something we rarely see, he uses a slide step. Throws a cutter for a strike and then another one, lower, called a strike. An improbable strike, a groaner for Buck Showalter and the home team, and good fortune for the Yanks. Still with the slide step Mo throws a fastball, high and out of the zone. The kids chases it. It’s only 92 mph but he’s late.

And behind two old pros–with some help from the home runs by Cano, Alex Rodriguez and a long one by Granderson–the Yanks win, 5-4.

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They’re just a game behind the Rays.

[Photo Credit: Patrick Semansky/AP]

Categories:  1: Featured  Game Recap  Yankees

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8 comments

1 Ben   ~  Sep 12, 2013 8:31 am

I love the way Jeter wears his hat so high on his head. It's the only dorky thing about him.

2 Alex Belth   ~  Sep 12, 2013 8:57 am

You've never seen him dance.

3 Bronx Boy in NC   ~  Sep 12, 2013 9:13 am

It's inconceivable to me how this team can be just a gork, a dying quail, a groundball with eyes from a playoff spot at this point.

This is gonna end at 1 a.m. some night not too far off, with me twisted into knots on the edge of my couch, yelling at the cat. No other way.

4 RIYank   ~  Sep 12, 2013 9:18 am

The Yankees are once again below Pythagorean .500 (meaning only that they've given up more runs than they've scored).

The series with the Rays is apt to be huge. One little advantage for our guys is that we have both Mondays off before that series, while the Rays have no days off at all. And, of course, it's in the Bronx.

5 BobbyB   ~  Sep 12, 2013 9:22 am

Every time I write them of as a wild card team, they come back and the other unworthy postseason teams play even worse than the Yankees. I still will be shocked if they make the post season but I'm watching them again which is a good thing.

6 kenboyer made me cry   ~  Sep 12, 2013 10:46 am

[3] [5] Like playing with house money, this team continues to have a reason to play. To those of us who have been watching closely, there have been many interesting moments; and it was great when baby Yankees, relief pitching, even Vern carrying the team as examples. But, do we really think this team will go far in the playoffs? Diminished expectations make for a more satisfied experience. I just hope the Yankees, and consequently us fans are not embarrassed on the national stage if they make the playoffs. But hey...you never know what could happen once the post season starts.

7 thelarmis   ~  Sep 12, 2013 2:33 pm

that's a great photo of chris davis. it's like he's playing a guitar solo and using the whammy bar!

8 RIYank   ~  Sep 12, 2013 5:18 pm

He is kind of a rock star.

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