A lot has changed in my life since my last post 2 weeks ago. There was a great reason for my lack of entries about my favorite team. My wife Angela gave birth to Declan Jeffrey on July 17th. The newest Yankee fan weighed in a 9lbs 22oz. He likes sleeping a lot, his older sister is always telling him “Hi”, and 11 days into life his favorite Yankee is Jayson Nix(you all know why). Life is good when you have a great family, and I am a lucky man. Now on to some quick hits on what’s been happening with the Bronx Bombers since that last entry.
The Yankees took 2 of three from the Angels who added Zach Greinke in a trade with the Brewers today. The way things look now these Angels will once again be a huge problem for the Bombers come October. You see they do all the things well on the baseball field the Yankees don’t. They run the bases, they bunt, they pitch well in big games. There 20 year old phenom and best player, Mike Trout may already be better than the Yankees best player as Robinson Cano continues to be an enigma. I think Mike Scioscia would manage circles around Joe Girardi. You know from this space I don’t love the 2012 incarnation of the Yankees. I just think the Angels would have no problem beating them in a series.
With a nice series win over a quality opponent the Yankees then went out and swept the Blue Jays. Jose Bautista hurt his wrist in game 1 of the series and was promptly put on the DL which obviosuly helped. That same game was highlighted by a Raul Ibanez tie breaking Grand Slam in the 8th inning. CC Sabathia returned the next night from his injured groin and delivered 6 shutout innings for the win. The sweep was completed by Hiroki Kuroda who pitched a complete game in a 7 inning rain-shortened affair. The victory had the Yankees full of confidence as they headed out west with an M.L.B best 57-34 ledger.
That confidence was misguided as the Bombers were promptly swept in Oakland by the torrid A’s. Each maddening loss was by just 1 run. 2 of the 4 defeats were in walk-off fashion. The dagger was the 12 inning loss in the finale of the series last Sunday in which Rafael Soriano blew a Sabathia victory by allowing a game tying homer in the 9th to Seth Smith. The Oakland series put all of the flaws of this ballclub on full display. The Yankees tried to hit homeruns in a pitchers park and walked just 1 time in the series. They failed to hit with runners in scoring position(.240 in the 4 games). Most importantly they did not make big pitches when it counted. The sweep against the A’s showed why the Yankees would not be favored in a playoff series against Texas, Anaheim, or even Detroit.
The Yankees arrived in Seattle to take on the Mariners licking their wounds. They thought it would be best to trade for the Mariners best player not named Jesus Montero and aquired Ichiro Suzuki for 2 minor league pitchers. The Yankees hope the 40 year old Ichiro will be ignited by a pennant race, and help offset the loss of Brett Gardner to elbow surgery. The Bombers took 2 out of 3 winning Suzuki’s Yankee debut in game 1 behind another Kuroda gem during which the righty punched out 9 in 7 innings of 1 run ball. They won the rubber game on Jayson Nix clutch, 8th inning, bases clearing double in what would have been another ugly loss full of RISP failures. The lone loss was very costly and came at the hands of King Felix Hernandez. Felix not only dominated the Bombers, but broke A-Rod’s hand in the process with a changeup that got away landing the 3B on the D.L. for 6 weeks.
Which brings us to this weekend series with the last place Red Sox. New York pummeled the Sox last night capped off by Curtis Granderson’s grand slam in the 10-3 route. A common theme in sports is 1 days hero is often the next days goat. That was true for Granderson this afternoon as Curtis botched a fly ball in the 9th inning into a triple that broke a 6 all tie. The Yankees picked up a shaky Sabathia by rallying from a 6-1 deficit. The big blow was Mark Teixeira’s dramatic 2 run homer off of his nememis Vicente Padilla in the bottom of the 8th. The loss does sting a little as completing the rally would have but their blood rivals 12.5 games back of them in the division. Gluttony is not becoming however especially in sports.
Until the last out of the World Series when I am convinced otherwise I still do not believe this Yankee team has the makeup of a champion. Despite all the warts of this club the league is clearly down. The Yankees are tied for the best record in the majors after 100 games with Washington and Cincinnati at 60-40. They have the biggest lead of any team in the game at 8.5. Ichiro is basically like having Gardner(who’s return I deemed a must for success). Sabathia is having a “bad” year for him at 10-3 and 3.57 because he has rarely been dominant. The injury thing has gotten ridiculous, and the team has continued to jumped over every hurdle. The bullpen will get Joba Chamberlain back in the next week. Andy Pettitte and A-Rod will both be back in late August in time to tune up for the postseason. You just never know, GM Brian Cashman may pull a blockbuster off before Tuesday’s trade deadline. All things considered the Yankee Universe is not a bad place to reside these last 62 games. Despite it being painful sometimes it should mostly be fun.
About the Author
Written by Brendan Sennott
I was born in the heart of the AL East in the late 70's and am a huge Yankees fan. (Don't hate) I have moved around to a lot of solid baseball markets in my life(Boston, Chicago, Detroit) and was a part-time reporter, producer, blogger, and on air personality for WDFN Radio Sportsradio 1130 The Fan in Detroit. I still live in the "D" and am married with one beautiful 9 month old daughter. My girls are my life. In my media career I've interviewed players, managers and executives in the sport and would love to get back in the business full time. Baseball is my passion. I look forward to shooting straight about the Yanks and M.L.B in my new blog and getting your feedback.