A game for the ages…to come back and win a very important game, against another team fighting for the playoffs was a lot of fun. It was only the 2nd time in NY Yankee history that they have won being down for runs in extra innings. I am not sure it equates the same as winning 16 straight extra inning games like Baltimore has done, but it was really exciting.
The game had so many managerial question marks that I won’t go into excruciating detail (as usual) because I don’t want to take away from the great win…but I need to make some comments…
First, a lot of people talk about how much this pumps up the yanks and gives them momentum, etc…I am not a huge believer in that, but clearly playing well is better than playing poorly, but if our starting pitcher goes out and gets pummeled then all that momentum is lost. We already had momentum as we now have won 9 of our last 10. The fact is we won and now we need to keep winning. My goal for the final 12 games was an aggressive 10-2 record. So far we are 1-0.
Second, Girardi did a great job going to Rapada when he did. I was at the game (which is why I won’t get as much into the pitch selection as it is harder to see) and we all wanted Nova out at that point. Rapada did a better than good job getting a DP at a critical moment; bases loaded and 1 out. I would not have started him the next inning, but Girardi tried to get a little greedy by allowing him to face some righties with a lot of lefties in there. It was a risk that was not idiotic, but it was odd for a pitcher who is usually used from anywhere from 1-3 batters to be used for so long (also that he has not had the steady work I am in favor of), and Girardi let him pitch a lot more than I would have. It didn’t work well as all the righties got hits and one of the lefties broke his bat and it fell in for a single. It was a risk that didn’t work out.
I was surprised when they pitched to Granderson with first base open and Stewart on deck, but they got lucky
Ibanez finally cost us two bases in the OF with his defense, but he more than made up for it with more production in one game than he has had in a month. He was an offensive hero! He had two homers including the dramatic tying HR and he also got a hustle double where he dove head first into second like Super Man! Of course, he also tried to dislodge the ball from the catcher. It was clean, but as an ex catcher I still don’t understand that rule.
While Ibanez was the hero, I didn’t understand why Dickerson is not used more? I surely would have liked to have the knowledge whether the guy is someone who can be our 4th OF’r…it appears like he should be.
Girardi made a bunch of odd moves PH with Nunez and then having to play him at 3rd but it was a crazy game.
Eppley had one guy to get out in a big spot and he came through!
It looked like the 1st baseman for Oakland came off the bag, but it was really close. Live I thought it came off, but on replay it was really close.
The Melky Mesa play was an odd one, but it was good he went back and didn’t keep running. That being said, I am not sure you could see on TV, but Mesa actually started then froze briefly as maybe he thought a line drive might have been caught. This slowed him up a little and he would have easily scored if he read it quickly…and of course hit the bag; kind of important as a pinch runner, but he was probably nervous.
Huge hit by ARod!
A lot of talk about leaving Garcia in there too long. The answer is he was left in there too long, but how could you not start him in the 13th inning when he had an easy 1,2,3 inning the one before and he has the stamina? If you were going to make a move it would have been against the leading off lefty, but then you are going to the last guy in our pen and that is questionable. I could see doing it and then if he gets him out going pushing him until one guy gets on, but Girardi stuck with Garcia. After walking the leadoff guy he could have taken Garcia out, but against the righty, he stuck with him. Wrong move again as he homered. This is where Garcia should have been out without question, but he after another HR Girardi too him out. After another HR allowed by the aforementioned lefty (Thomas), the game looked to be over. After convincing the guy who drove us to stay just ion case we see a great comeback (no small task), we got to enjoy an amazing comeback!
Good job by Wade and Joba giving us 1 inning of scoreless ball. Garcia did give us 3 scoreless innings as well and overall did a good job.
One playoff note, Baltimore has the tie breaker with us, so we need to be a game ahead otherwise we would become the WC team. Interestingly, if we are tied and neither team would be a WC team, we would play a playoff game.