"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Grits n Gravy


Remember that tough at bat Paulie O’Neill had against John Rocker in the 1999 Whirled Serious? I couldn’t help but think of itt today in the 9th inning when Jacoby Ellsbury led off against Aroldis Chapman. Tie score, Yanks 2, Reds 2. Paulie O in the booth calling the game along with Michael Kay.

Ellsbury took pitches and fouled off more–all fastballs, all 100 mph or faster. Nine pitches in all, the last one grounded through the left side for a base hit, his fourth of the day.

Ellsbury stole second without a throw, moved to third on a wild pitch and then trotted home with the game winning run when Brian McCann’s pop fly to short right field fell in between 3 fielders. The Red had the shift on against the lefty McCann and there was some confusion as to who was going to get the ball. It was a Mack Sennett moment, minus the casualties–though I could already hear the Old School commentators on the MLB Network talking about this being a drawback to the shift. The Reds’ feelings were plenty hurt, though. What a lousy way to lose a game.

The Yankees? After hanging tough against Johnny Cueto, surviving Dellin Betances serving up a game-tying home run in the 8th–taking a win out of Hiroki Kuroda’s pocket–they sweep the Reds and should enjoy themselves plenty tonight.

The Yanks played well–although they left a ton of men on base–and they got some luck.

Final Score:

Yanks 3, Reds 2.

Oh, yeah. Ellsbury really has been a pleasure, hasn’t he?

[Picture by Bags]

Well, Okay, Then


The Wife and I ran errands yesterday afternoon and so we followed the game in fits and spurts with John and Suzyn. Wouldn’t you know it but the Yanks won, 7-1.

Not bad, so far. 

Today gives a stiffer challenge with the Reds throwing Johnny Cueto.

Bombers counter with our man Hiroki.

Never mind this dreamy cool weather:

Let’s Go Yank-ees!

[Picture by Bags]

No Votto, No Re-Run, No Rent

An old propeller plane flies over the Londolozi Game Reserve in South Africa.

Overcast but pleasant July Saturday. Yanks and Reds again this afternoon at the Stadium.

Brett Gardner LF

Derek Jeter SS

Jacoby Ellsbury CF

Mark Teixeira 1B

Brian McCann C

Carlos Beltran DH

Ichiro Suzuki RF

Brian Roberts 2B

Kelly Johnson 3B

F what you heard:

Let’s Go Yank-ees!

[Photo Credit: Ann Street Studio]

Welcome Back


Dag, I missed it. But when I checked the score–Yanks 4, Reds 3–I was happy. Especially with the Reds’ good starting pitching the rest of the weekend.

Chad Jennings has the particulars. 

[Picture by Bags]



Yanks host the Reds. Phelps on the hill.


Brett Gardner LF
Derek Jeter SS
Jacoby Ellsbury CF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Brian McCann C
Carlos Beltran DH
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Brian Roberts 2B
Kelly Johnson 3B

Never mind the cobwebs:

Let’s Go Yank-ees!

[Photo Credit: Marvin E. Newman]

Beat of the Day


Several shades of living.

[Picture by Leonard Freed]

Morning Art


Paintings by John Register. 


Million Dollar Movie


In the Times, John Le Carre remembers Phillip Seymour Hoffman:

There’s probably nobody more redundant in the film world than a writer of origin hanging around the set of his movie, as I’ve learned to my cost. Alec Guinness actually did me the favor of having me shown off the set of the BBC’s TV adaptation of “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.” All I was wanting to do was radiate my admiration, but Alec said my glare was too intense.

Come to think of it, Philip did the same favor for a woman friend of ours one afternoon on the shoot of “A Most Wanted Man” in Hamburg that winter of 2012. She was standing in a group 30-odd yards away from him, just watching and getting cold like everybody else. But something about her bothered him, and he had her removed. It was a little eerie, a little psychic, but he was bang on target because the woman in the case is a novelist, too, and she can do intensity with the best of us. Philip didn’t know that. He just sniffed it.

In retrospect, nothing of that kind surprised me about Philip, because his intuition was luminous from the instant you met him. So was his intelligence. A lot of actors act intelligent, but Philip was the real thing: a shining, artistic polymath with an intelligence that came at you like a pair of headlights and enveloped you from the moment he grabbed your hand, put a huge arm round your neck and shoved a cheek against yours; or if the mood took him, hugged you to him like a big, pudgy schoolboy, then stood and beamed at you while he took stock of the effect.

Philip took vivid stock of everything, all the time. It was painful and exhausting work, and probably in the end his undoing. The world was too bright for him to handle. He had to screw up his eyes or be dazzled to death. Like Chatterton, he went seven times round the moon to your one, and every time he set off, you were never sure he’d come back, which is what I believe somebody said about the German poet Hölderlin: Whenever he left the room, you were afraid you’d seen the last of him. And if that sounds like wisdom after the event, it isn’t. Philip was burning himself out before your eyes. Nobody could live at his pace and stay the course, and in bursts of startling intimacy he needed you to know it.


Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Toronto Blue Jays v Boston Red Sox

Dig this nice appreciation of Mark Buehrle by Rany Jazayerli over at Grantland:

Everyone makes mistakes. One of mine is that it took me a long time to appreciate Buehrle, and not just because every time he pitched for the White Sox, I had to listen to Hawk Harrelson sing his praises. I mean, Buehrle was drafted in the 38th round out of some college no one had heard of,2 he almost never hit 90 on the radar gun, and he didn’t strike anyone out. Sure, he reached the major leagues just 14 months after he signed as a draft-and-follow in 1999, but he was never a top prospect. He wasn’t much of a prospect, period. During his first full season in the majors, I fixated on his mere 126 strikeouts in 221 innings far more than on his 16-8 record, 3.29 ERA, or AL-leading 1.066 WHIP. He was a junk-tossing left-hander, and those guys always get figured out eventually.

Only, Buehrle hasn’t gotten figured out, and he’s currently helping fuel the Toronto Blue Jays’ playoff hopes. Despite pitching in arguably the AL’s best home run park for hitters for most of his career, he’s produced only one bad season: 2006, the sole year when his ERA+ dropped below 100 and, conveniently if less meaningfully, the only year when he finished with a losing record. He’s been consistently above average without ever being elite. He’s earned a single Cy Young vote just once, in 2005, and the category in which he’s most often led the league is hits allowed, four times.

He’s led the league in hits allowed four times because he throws a lot of innings, and because he gives up a lot of contact. And he gives up a lot of contact because the one thing he does not do is miss bats. After getting called up midseason in 2000, Buehrle struck out 37 batters in 51.1 innings, a ratio a tick higher than the league average at the time. He’s posted a below-average strikeout rate every season since, and has struck out 150 batters just once in his career.

[Photo Credit: Getty Images]

New York Minute


So good.

[Photo Credit: Kelly Carlin]

Beat of the Day



[Photo Via: Memories: Lost and Found]

Taster’s Cherce


Oh, hell yes. 

Million Dollar Movie


Here’s a good interview with Richard Linklater talking about Boyhood.

And here’s Anthony Lane’s review of the movie in the New Yorker.

Morning Art



New York Minute


Found over at Vintage New York. 

Star Light, Star Bright


Jeter’s final All Star Game.

Deh-Rick Gee-Tah!

[Pictures Via: It's a Long Season]

Afternoon Art


Mon oncle. 

Ding Dong Derby

CITY-BASE-superJumbo All Star Break Open Thread. [Photo Credit: Alex Brandon/AP]

Taster’s Cherce


Food 52 talks avocados. 

Beat of the Day


Torched it.

[Painting by Alyssa Monks]

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