Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Genius Maker #80

These Boston games in Fenway are really really grueling. The Red Sox are a very tough team. We had our best on the mound and they had their #4 and it was a battle every step of the way. I don’t get much involved with the conversations of the announcers while I fast forward through a game, but I did catch one comment that was made by Kay who said every pitch is contested. He is correct! Every pitch is important and fought for and it really makes it interested, exciting and grueling.

There was some excitement after Cervelli got plunked. In many ways he deserved it as what he was doing was bush, but I was surprised Lackey would do that to lead off the inning when trailing in a close game…especially in Fenway. I was glad we scored a run out of it. Another note on Cervelli…I have made my opinion of him be known, but I have to say he has been swinging a competitive bat of late. He is 15 for his last 36 AB’s including his HR last night, but I have also been impressed with his working the strike zone well. In his bases loaded AB that he grounded out to 2nd he worked the count well and then hit a decently hard ball right at the SS. It would be a huge plus if he could be a reasonable hitter. I am not confident he will keep it up, but one must give him some credit!

In this 5-2 victory, CC showed why he is a horse. He battled all game as the Red Sox hitters kept fighting, but he went 6 innings allowing 2 runs throwing a season high 128 pitches. He had a good changeup early along with a good fastball and breaking ball, but the Sox did a good job working the count. After the 2nd inning he lost the feel for his change-up and had to rely on only two pitches (he still did throw the change though which is important). I really like CC and love having him on our team.

Swisher had a terrific game. Battling every AB and working the count. Swish saw 22 pitches in only 4 AB’s and went 3-3 with a walk. Swish, Cano and Chavez were the offensive stars that carried us…This was also why I didn’t like pinch hitting Nunez for Chavez at all in the 7th inning. First, we are up 5-2 and Chavez is a GG defender while Nunez has been erratic (to be kind). Second, Chavez was swinging well so why take him out? Nunez, continued the Girardi poor gut feeling decisions by popping up on the 1st pitch with 1st and 3rd and 1 out…Girardi made a bad mistake there.

Posada was awful today. He looked like he was trying to hit everything off the monster and instead he didn’t swing the bat at all. His days are numbered with performances like that.

Tex was also ahead of the off speed stuff and behind the fastball on many occasions.

The announcers got on Gardner for “fake” bunting early in the game and they made comments like when you are in a slump you need to not just fake bunt but you need to actually bunt. While conceptually I agree with them, I think they read the situation wrong and I think he would have bunted but he pulled back both bunts because the pitches were breaking balls and they through off his timing…not that he was going to pull it back anyway. He did sac later on a 3-0 count and he beat it out. I am not sure I would do that, but what was interesting was the perfect bunt kind of caught the 3rd baseman off guard as he expected him to not offer at the pitch.

Rivera threw outside to lefties more than you will ever see him do. He got the job done after a terrible call by the umps when the batter swung at a pitch that hit him. This was especially annoying after they made the wrong call on a legit HBP on Granderson in the 1st inning when they ruled it hit the bat and not him.

Boy the umps draw my venom a lot.

I have to make the point that Gardner is a super stud in LF. The catch he made in the LC gap on a line drive was fantastic. He got a great jump and stole a double from Scutaro on making a play that I am not sure anyone else would have made (Crawford maybe).

I hope Hughes and Burnett can locate some spots or these next two games could get very ugly

Last comment…and after a hard fought win against Boston, I shouldn’t be this negative, but ARod is needed on this team and every day he is out with nagging injuries it makes me think that the roids he took are breaking down his body faster (as they say it does) and the Yanks may be able to void some of those final years that shouldn’t have been on there anyway. Wow that was a long sentence…well my thoughts are that they could argue that they signed him without the prior knowledge he took them…maybe for another day. At the conclusion of this season he will have six years and $143 million left on his contract; Hank Steinbrenner should be embarrassed.

I would love a split over the next 2.

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