Okay so it wasn’t perfect. The Yankees left 634 men on base and made the game closer than it felt. It felt as if the Yanks were comfortably ahead all afternoon long though they were not. The crowd was subdued, drinking in a sunny and crisp day in the Bronx. But hey, perfection is overrated.
The Yanks scored three runs against Matt Scherzer who had more than a couple of reasons to beef with the home plate umpire Rob Drake on the count of a strike zone the size of a tick’s tuchas. On several occasions not only was Scherzer and his catcher fooled by a called third strike, the Yankee hitter looked caught out there too.
Still, the Yanks scored enough to win on two of the weakest RBI’s you’ll ever see from Alex Rodriguez (if an RBI can ever be weak), a sacrifice fly from Robinson Cano and solo homers from Curtis Granderson and Andruw Jones.
Granderson’s ball was almost caught by Austin Jackson who made a terrific effort.
C.C. Sabathia pitched a fine game, going eight innings. David Robertson pitched a scoreless ninth.
The only drag, other than all the runners that the Yanks left on base, came when Nick Swisher left the game with a hamstring injury. It was diagnosed as a low grade strain. After the game, Joe Girardi said Swisher will miss a few days but not go on the disabled list. A relief, for sure.
Alex Rodriguez is still expected to join the Yankees in Minnesota on Thursday, but Joe Girardi said that he might not be immediately activated from the disabled list because of uncertainty about whether his right knee is ready.
“We may not activate him for a couple of days,” Girardi said.
Rodriguez, who had arthroscopic surgery on the knee last month, played third base for Class AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Wednesday, then was expected to fly to Minnesota. (He went 1 for 2, with two walks.) Girardi said he wanted to talk to Rodriguez and perhaps have him get some treatment from the trainer Gene Monahan, work in the batting cage and take ground balls before making a decision.
“A couple of days, if you rush it, could cost you a couple of weeks if you end up hurting something else,” Girardi said. “That’s why we want to take a look at him with our own eyes tomorrow and see how far he is away and see if he’s ready.”
Girardi said he might initially use Rodriguez as the designated hitter in order to ease him back into action.
Well, that sucked. C.C. Sabathia got mushed by the Red Sox again, the bats didn’t do dick and there was no joy in the Boogie Down. 10-4 Sox.
The beauty part for me is that I was stuck at a family party and didn’t see a pitch of it. Still, lousy as this was, it’ll feel better if the Yanks return to the favor tomorrow night against that sombitch from Texas.
As Jesse Jackson once said, “Keep Hope Alive.” No time to get un-Dude.
Oh, and C.C. will have his revenge against the Sox. And you can take that to the bank.
Before I got off the subway in the Bronx tonight, I checked the MLB app on my phone and was pleased to see the score: Yanks 4, Twins 0. Mark Teixeira with another dinger, again of the three run variety. Andruw Jones with a solo shot–Hey, Now.
I ran for the bus on 231st Street and put on the John Sterling radio call once I got on board. Ol’ Silver Throat usually annoys me but tonight I was comforted by the sound of his voice. In the early innings of an April game, with the Yanks ahead and C.C. Sabathia on the mound, Sterling was unhurried, almost sedate and entirely pleasant.
Now, if you stand too close to the back door of a New York City bus an automated voice comes over the loud speaker and says, “Please step away from the rear door.” A man wearing earplugs was too close to the door and the message repeated. This didn’t bother him any on the count of the earplugs. I focused on Sterling’s patter when I heard a vendor in the distance on the radio broadcast. A thick Bronx accent barked, “Hot dogs…hot dogs…hot dogs.” You know the tone–imploring and insistent.
So the music in my ears went from electronic to authentic: “Please step away from the rear door,” “Hot Dogs,” Please Step away from the rear door,” “Hot Dogs.” The rhythm made me happy and I remembered an old Simpsons episode: “Dental plan,” Lisa needs braces,” Dental plan,” “Lisa needs braces.”
I got home and watched the rest of the game. Sabathia was visibly frustrated with himself but he sailed through the Twins lineup anyhow, retiring the last 17 batters he faced.
So it was a mild surprise to see Rafael Soriano come out to pitch the eighth and disconcerting when he walked two of the first three men he faced (and the comments section here at the Banter lit up like a suicide hotline in Detroit). Denard Span slapped a single to left and the bases were loaded. But Tsuyoshi Nishioka, a slender guy, struck out on three pitches, and waved his hand at the umpire. Enter Joe Mauer, and restlessness at the Stadium. Soriano walked him on five pitches and his night was over.
“Last year it really hit me how important I am to this team,” Burnett said yesterday on the way out of George M. Steinbrenner Field.
“I am not saying that we didn’t win the World Series because of me, but I know if I had been right, it would have been a lot easier chore. I never knew how important I was to a team. That’s not being cocky or arrogant, it’s the way it is. I mean, what did I do to help?”