You are currently viewing archive for September 2010.
Posted by: David
CC Sabathia was brilliant into the ninth inning on Tuesday night in Toronto. He had only given up two hits and one run as the inning started. Travis Snider who homered earlier led off with a single and that was followed by a walk to Yunel Escobar. Sabathia got A.L. home run leader Jose Bautista to fly out to left for the fist out of the ninth. Girardi decided he had had enough and Rivera was summoned.

Mo faced Vernon Wells and he hit the ball hard but it was right at Brett Gardner in left and there was one out to go. Lyle Overbay hit the ball off the end of the bat and A-Rod was able to grab it behind third and bounced a throw to Texeira which just beat Overbay for the final out of the game and to clinch a postseason berth for the 2010 Yankees.

The star of the game was CC Sabathia who was brilliant with a low pitch count. He went 8 1/3 innings and surrendered only three hits and one run and was credited with his 21st win of the season against only seven losses.

The Yankees scored all six of their runs tonight on something other than a base hit. A-Rod, Teixeira and Cano hit sacrifice flies. A-Rod walked with the bases loaded and the other two runs scored on infield outs.

The Yankees celebrated with champagne in the clubhouse and still remain one-half game behind Tampa for the A.L. East lead. David Price won his 19th with the Rays beating the Orioles 5-0.

With the 2/3 of an inning pitched, Rivera's 2010 season ERA now stands at 1.83.
Posted by: Patrick
Last week, Mariano Rivera was honored by the Latino Sports Writers and Broadcasters Association as the top closer in the American League for the 2009 season. This is according to a report on

The awards began 21 years ago as a reaction to the bypassing of Ruben Sierra as the AL MVP. Many believed Sierra was not given the award because he was Latino. Thus, the LWSBA decided to honor those deserving ballplayers of their own heritage. The numbers of categories has grown as has the prestige of the honors as the years have passed. Now in its 21st year, the awards were dedicated to the memory of #21, Roberto Clemente.
Posted by: David
It looked like A-Rod would be a hero again. Daisuke Matsuzaka stymied the Yankees until the seventh with a very low pitch count. With Teixeira on first, A-Rod came to bat against Dice-K with an .095 batting average against him. Matsuzaka got him to 0-2 but then left a fast ball low and out over the plate. A-Rod delivered a two run home run to right center to put the Yankees ahead 2-1.

Phil Hughes was reinstated as the Yankee starter after being pushed ahead to next Wednesday in favor of Dustin Moseley. Hughes was great into the seventh allowing only one run. Bill Hall blooped a fly ball to right which Swisher charged and dove for but it fell under his glove and behind him for a double. Swisher is clearly not running well on his injured knee. Hall would eventually score on an RBI single from Victor Martinez.

Hughes walked the first two batters he faced in the seventh but David Robertson was able to get out of the inning after both runners were sacrificed. He got a key strike out for the second out and then retired the last batter.

Kerry Wood took over in the eighth and gave up a hit but walked David Ortiz intentionally with the tying run on second. Rivera was called with two outs and two on in the eighth and retired Adrian Beltre to end the inning.

The Yankees could not add any insurance for Mo and he faced the ninth with the opportunity to save the game and clinch at worst a tie for a playoff spot. Jed Lowrie's fly ball to deep right was held up by the wind and Swisher caught in on the warning track for the first out. Ryan Kalish singled up the middle and then was able to steal second and third with only one out. With the infield in, Bill Hall grounded a single past A-Rod and the score was tied. Hall then proceeded to steal second and third and scored on a sacrifice fly by pinch hitter Mike Lowell to put the Red Sox ahead at 3-2. Rivera then retired Marco Scutaro on a fly ball to center.

It was now Jonathan Papelbon's turn for the save and he was not much better. Jeter led off by flying out. Swisher then battled and lined a single to right. Texeira followed with a single and A-Rod had a chance to be the hero again. A-Rod walked to load the bases and Cano hit a sharp single to right to tie the score. The ball was hit too hard and only one run was able to score. However, Posada then struck out and Berkman was retired and the scored was tied at 3-3 heading to the tenth.

Joba Chamberlain was able to retire the Sox in order and the Yankees had their chance. Hideki Okajima was brought on and Curtis Granderson led off with a single to right field. Brett Gardner bunted and the throw from catcher Victor Martinez hit Gardner in the back. The Yankees were set up with runners on first and third and no outs. Jeter was walked intentionally and then Marcus Thames pinch hit for Greg Golson who had replaced Swisher in right field. Thames hit a hard ground shot to third which Beltre was able to catch and force Granderson at home. Juan Miranda was the next to pinch hit, replacing Nunez who had pinch run for Teixeira previously. Okajima walked him with the bases loaded and the Yankees won the game 4-3.

For Rivera, it was his 5th blown save in 37 save opportunities on the season and his third in the month of September. With the two runs allowed in 1 1/3 innings his season ERA now stands at 1.85.

The magic number to clinch a playoff spot in now at one. Another Yankee win or a Red Sox loss and the Yankees clinch. Tampa Bay lost so the Yankees are only one half game out of the AL East lead. The Yankees now go to Toronto for a three game series and the Red Sox go to Chicago for four. Next weekend both teams conclude the regular season with a three game series at Fenway Park in Boston.
Posted by: David
Mariano Rivera was not his usual automatic but he held on and got the big outs when he needed to.

Beginning the ninth with an 8-5 lead, Mo shattered the bat of John Jaso, sending a grounder to Mark Teixeira at first for out number one. Ben Zobrist dropped the bat head on an inside cutter and was able to loop it down the right field line and keep it fair as it just hit the chalk before it bounced into the stands for a ground rule double.

Carl Crawford battled and fouled off three 2-2 pitches before grounding out to third for the second out of the inning. Evan Longoria got jammed but fought it off and looped a single over the heads of Cano and Tex for an RBI single. He took second on defensive indifference and the Sandman still needed one out for the save. Dan Johnson was the last hope.

Last week in Tampa, he hit a pair of two run home runs off Phil Hughes which cost Hughes and the Yankees a game. Mo tried to keep the ball outside and got him to 3-2 but then came inside and hit Johnson with the pitch. Rookie speedster Jennings was inserted as a pinch runner for Johnson. Matt Joyce then grounded sharply to Texeira at first to end the game and provide the Yankees an 8-6 win.

The night was very emotional for the Yankees and the entire Yankees organization. The Yankees dedicated a monument to George M. Steinbrenner with his children and grandchildren present for the ceremonies. In attendance were Yogi Berra, Reggie Jackson, Joe Torre, Don Mattingly, David Wells, Tino Martinez, Roy White and Gene Michael.

The Yankees jumped out to an early 2-0 lead thanks to a two run shot off the bat of Curtis Granderson on an 2-0 pitch from Matt Garza. They would extend the lead to 4-0 which included an RBI sacrifice fly from A-Rod.

Ivan Nova was cruising again like last week in Tampa and then imploded in the sixth. Jason Bartlett led off with a single and Jaso would follow with another single. Zobrist got on and Crawford reached on catcher's interference for a run. Evan Longoria then hit into a double play and a run scored to make it a 4-2 game. Boone Logan would replace Nova and Johnson would drop a single into center field to make the score 4-3 and the Rays tied the score on a bases loaded walk.

The Yankees would come right back with another four run inning which included an RBI single from Derek Jeter and a huge three run home run from Curtis Granderson high off the foul pole in right to make the score 8-4. The Rays would add a run on a sacrifice fly from Longoria.

The save for Rivera is his 32nd of the season in 36 save opportunities and the 558th of his career. His 2010 season ERA now stands at 1.58. With the win the Yankees now have a 1 1/2 game lead in the AL East. With the Boston loss the magic number to clinch a playoff spot is now at 5.
Posted by: David
Andy Pettitte's return from a two month injury was spoiled as the Baltimore Orioles rallied for a run against Kerry Wood in the 8th and by tying it in the ninth as Luke Scott led off with a home run off Mo as his cutter did not get far enough inside. Mo toughened and did not lose the game.

He got Ty Wiggington to foul out to first before Corey Patterson hit another cutter out over the plate for a single. Josh Bell struck out looking and Craig Tatum flied out to center to end the inning. The game went into extra innings and the Yankees had a huge opportunity in the 11th.

A-Rod pinch hit and led off with a walk. Eduardo Nunez pinch ran and he went to third on an errant pick off attempt from Gonzalez. Marcus Thames pinch hit for Brett Gardner on a 1-1 count and eventually struck out. Mark Teixeira pinch hit and was walked intentionally and Derek Jeter was also walked to load the bases. Lance Berkman then hit into an inning ending 5-4-3 double play.

In the bottom of the 11th, Luke Scott led off with a fly ball double to left. Thames was playing him to pull and could not get to his fly ball before it fell. Wiggington then hit a drive up in the alley in right center to win the game.

Rivera has converted 31 of 35 save opportunities for 2010. His record is 3-3 and his ERA now stands at 1.45.

Tampa lost so the Yankees keep their 1/2 game lead ahead of the big four game series starting tomorrow night in the Bronx. Boston won with Jon Lester and gained a game to be seven games behind the Yankees.
Posted by: David
His solo home run to lead off the second inning was the only offense the Yankees could muster off of Kevin Millwood all night. After that Cano and Berkman singled and the Yankees would load the bases but could not get the big hit to add any more runs.

A.J. Burnett pitched better but he hit Cesar Izturis to lead off an inning and he stole second, went to third on a ground out and scored on a sacrifice fly. Adam Jones hit his 19th home run to give the O's the lead at 2-1 and Robert Andino hit his first of the year to give Baltimore what seemed a huge lead at 3-1. Andino's home run came after the second 3-6-3 double play started by Mark Teixeira. His glove probably saved Burnett and Yankees at least two or three runs.

In the eighth, the Yankees would get runners to second and third but Gardner grounded out to end the inning.

In the ninth, Jorge Posada led off for New York. He had pinch hit for Cervelli earlier and worked a walk. Posada had a great eleven pitch AB and eventually singled to left center on a splitter from O's closer Uehara.

Jeter would strike out looking but Granderson followed with a line single to right in front of Markakis to put the tying runs on base. Teixeira would get the good wood on the ball but got under it and popped it way up in the air for the second out of the inning. A-Rod was the last hope.

He struck out on Wednesday night in Tampa. but tonight was different. Uehara threw a fast ball inside on 1-2 and the pitch was called a ball. The Baltimore bench jeered to the umpire and A-Rod smiled. On the next pitch Uehara left a fast ball somewhat inside and A-Rod crushed it and it sailed into the left field stands for a home run and a Yankee lead at 4-3. It was the second blown save of the year for Uehara, the first being last week's walk off against Nick Swisher at the stadium.

Rivera entered in the bottom half of the frame and faced Felix Pie, forcing a grounder back to the mound for the first out. Adam Jones popped out to shortstop for the second out. A pitch before he had lined a ball down the right field line which just dropped foul. Matt Wieters was the victim of a broken bat and he grounded weakly to short to end the game.

The save for Rivera was his 31st of the season in 34 save opportunities and the 557th of his career. His 2010 season ERA now stands at 1.31.

With the win and a Tampa Bay loss to the Angels, the Yankees move back into first place in the Al East by a 1/2 game. The Red Sox also lost and are now 7 games behind the Yankees.
Posted by: David
This game looked like a laugher early, but ended up being another nail biter. Last night both teams combined for only one run in eleven innings but tonight the Yankees jumped out to an early 6-0 lead and rookie Ivan Nova was cruising through the first four innings.

The six Yankee runs were highlighted by a two run home run from Robinson Cano and a solo shot from Alex Rodriguez.

However, in the fifth, Ivan Nova imploded. Carlos Pena led off the inning with a home run to center. That was followed by a double down the line from B.J. Upton.

Brignac was retired but John Jaso singled the second run in. Ben Zobrist was retired for the second out but Nova could not get the third out to qualify for the win. Carl Crawford walked and that was followed by an RBI single from Evan Longoria and an RBI single from Matt Joyce. The scored was 6-4.

Boone Logan would replace Nova with two outs and two runners on. Willy Aybar pinch hit and Logan got two strikes on him with fast balls on the outside corner. He tried a breaking pitch which hung down and in and Aybar blasted it for a three run home run and a Tampa Bay lead at 7-6.

The Yankees would fight right back in the sixth with an RBI broken bat hit from Robinson Cano to tie the score.

The bullpens were great on both sides. Logan was followed by Chamberlain, Wood, Robertson and Rivera. Logan allowed only one run on the home run, but the rest of the bullpen held the Rays scoreless. Kerry Wood has been masterful since being acquired from Cleveland near the trade deadline.

Robertson pitched the bottom of the ninth and was helped out with a diving catch from Curtis Granderson on a shot up the alley from Zobrist. His spectacular grab ended the inning.

In the tenth, Jorge Posada would pinch hit and lead off with a monster home run off the roof above the center field wall. The Yankees could not add any more runs and Rivera was handed an 8-7 lead to try and save.

Carl Crawford led off with a line single to right. The hearts of all Yankee fans momentarily collapsed as Evan Longoria hit a ball to deep center which Granderson caught a few steps in front of the wall. Crawford stole second with Matt Joyce hitting. Joyce would fly out to medium right field and Greg Golson would nab Crawford as he tried to go to third on the catch. The throw was short hopped by A-Rod and the tag applied to end the game.

For Rivera, it is his 30th save on the season in 33 save opportunities. His record is 3-3. The save was also the 556th of his career. His 2010 season ERA now stands at 1.33.
Posted by: David
The Yankees fought back to take the lead at 6-5 but the great Mariano Rivera just did not have it on Saturday night in Texas.

He faced Vladimir Guerrero to start the inning and he kept trying to keep the ball inside and eventually walked him. Guerrero had singled the night before off Rivera on a cutter outside. Esteban German was inserted to run for Guerrero and on a pitch to Nelson Cruz he took off and Cruz blooped a single to right center to put runners on first and third with no outs.

Ian Kinsler grounded a double down the third base line and Rivera blew his third save of the season. With runners on second and third and still no one out the Yankees decided to intentionally walk Davis to load the bases. Blanco popped out for the first out and Jeff Francouer was next. Rivera tried to get way inside and ending up hitting Francouer with the pitch to force the winning run home and hang another loss on the Yankees at 7-6.

With the loss and a Tampa win, the Yankee lead in the A.L. East is now only 1/2 game. As I am writing this the Yankees lost again this afternoon as Cliff Lee was awesome into the ninth. Toronto won on a two run walk off home run over Tampa so the Yankees are still in first.

For Rivera, he has 29 saves in 32 save opportunities. His 2010 season ERA now stands at 1.36.

The Yankees now go to Tampa to face off in a pennant show down with the Rays with two Cy Young candidates on the bump. CC Sabathia again tries for his 20th win going against Tampa phenom David Price.
Posted by: David
The vaunted Yankee bullpen had a little trouble on Friday night in Texas. The Yankees had jumped out to a 4-1 lead as Rangers starter C.J. Wilson lasted only three innings.

Javier Vazquez faded in the sixth but left with the lead. The Yankees would extend the lead to 5-3 on a bases loaded walk to Mark Teixeira which produced his 100th RBI of the season.

The Rangers edged back when Boone Logan walked the only hitter he faced and he eventually scored on a ground ball induced by David Robertson. Kerry Wood pitched a perfect inning but Joba Chamberlain hung a breaking pitch to Nelson Cruz and he tied the score with a bomb to left.

The bullpens would hold on even though both sides threatened to take the lead. Mariano Rivera entered in the tenth inning and he faced Vladimir Guerrero to start the inning. Vlad extended his long arms and muscled a single to right to start the inning. He was pinch run for by Esteban German. Nelson Cruz flied deep to the center field wall for the first out. Cruz would steal second but was left stranded when Ian Kinsler was caught looking and was ejected for arguing and Mitch Moreland struck out to end the inning.

In the 11th, Bengie Molina flied out to center, Julio Borbon grounded to third and Elvis Andrus grounded back to the box.

The Yankees would have a runner on third with only one out in both the 12th and 13th innings but could not push him across. Chad Gaudin replaced Rivera and got through the 12th but Nelson Cruz would homer again on the first pitch of the 13th to end the game in walk off fashion for the Rangers.

Rivera lowered his 2010 season ERA to 1.03.
Posted by: David
Javier Vazquez returned to the rotation on Saturday afternoon after a few good appearances in the bullpen. He grinded and battled but was the victim of the long ball again. He surrendered a solo shot to Lyle Overbay and a two run shot off the foul pole to John McDonald. The two dingers put the Blue Jays out to an early 3-0 lead.

The Yankees would come back with a run scoring double from Derek Jeter and a key two run single from struggling Robinson Cano. The Yankees would take the lead in the middle of the game on a ground out from Brett Gardner which scored Eduardo Nunez.

However, even though Vazquez was striking out hitters, he virtually did not have anything. The Blue Jays came back in the fifth after two were out. With runners on first and third and Vazquez fading fast, Girardi removed him with only one out needed to be eligible for the win.

Dustin Moseley was in and he had retired Lyle Overbay in all eight AB's he faced him in his career. Today was different as Overbay doubled down the line in right and the game was tied. Boone Logan had also been warming up and it would seem logical to have him come in against the lefty Overbay, but Girardi went with the percentages. His strategy backfired and Thames also had some trouble digging the ball out of the corner which allowed Vernon Wells to score all the way from first.

Thames however would redeem himself with a key two run home run off of Jason Frasor to put the Yankees ahead 7-5 to stay.

The Yankee bullpen again was exceptional with Moseley, Logan, Chamberlain, Wood and Rivera pitching 4 and 1/3 innings of scoreless relief.

Rivera faced John McDonald to start the ninth and struck him out swinging for the first out. Travis Snider was jammed and looped a bouncing ball to second which Cano handled on a hop and threw him out for the second out. DeWayne Wise singled to right on the first pitch and Aaron Hill was the potential tying run at the plate. Mo caught him looking at an inside cutter to end the game.

The save for Rivera was his 29th in 31 save opportunities this season and also the 555th of his career. His 2010 season ERA now stands at 1.07.
Posted by: David
Ivan Nova struggled this afternoon in the Bronx. The 23 year old right hander could not make it through the fifth inning and as a result did not qualify for win.

Nova left with the Yankees winning 5-3 and was relieved by Boone Logan. Logan was able to retire the side without any further damage and he was followed by David Robertson, Kerry Wood and Mariano Rivera. In all, the bullpen pitched 4 and 1/3 innings of hitless relief. Kerry Wood was credited with the win.

Rivera faced Mike McCoy to lead off the ninth and McCoy tried to push a bunt past the cat like quick Mo. Not a chance, Rivera charged off the mound and fielded the ball easily, close to the line and retired McCoy on one pitch. Travis Snider had his bat shattered on the second pitch of his at-bat and grounded to Tex at first unassisted for out number two. Jose Bautista got ahead in the count 2-0 but then popped up foul to Pena at third to end the game. Rivera's 2010 season ERA now stands at 1.09.

The Yankees scoring was led by Curtis Granderson's 3 RBI, two double day. Brett Gardner chipped in with three runs scored. Mark Teixeira went 1 for 4 with a double and his 99th RBI of the season.

The series continues tomorrow with the third of five consecutive day games with a 1 PM start.
Posted by: David
A.J. Burnett returned somewhat to normalcy on Wednesday night in the Bronx. I suppose you can brand him somewhat of an enigma. Think back to game two of the World Series last year. The Yankees were down 0-1 at home to the Phillies after Cliff Lee and Chase Utley pounded them 6-1.

Burnett allowed only one hit and the Yankees were on their way to their 27th world championship. The Yankees expected more of the same but 2010 has been more downs than ups for the right hander from Arkansas.

He was not overpowering and dominant but he held the A's to three runs and the Yankees held on to win their fifth straight with a 4-3 squeaker over Oakland. Mark Teixeira had three hits including a run scoring double and two run single for three RBI on the night. Curtis Granderson hit a solo blast for the other run.

The Yankee bullpen was masterful with Joba Chamberlain, Boone Logan, Kerry Wood and Mariano Rivera slamming the door.

Rivera entered to the strains of "Enter Sandman" and pitched a scoreless ninth again. He got Cliff Pennington to ground to Tex at first for out one. Coco Crisp hit a smash one hopper back through the box but Rivera snatched it for the second out. It would have surely been a single if not for Mo. Daric Barton battled and eventually reached on an infield single as he just beat Jeter's throw. Kurt Suzuki was looking for the outside cutter and Rivera threw two two-seam sinkers low and in. The second Suzuki whiffed at and the ball game was over.

For Rivera, the save was his 28th of the season in 30 save opportunities and also the 554th of his career. His 2010 season ERA now stands at 1.11.

As I complete this entry, I just found out that the Yankees won again this afternoon with CC Sabathia gaining his 19th win against only five losses. He allowed only one hit in eight innings helping the Yankees to a four game sweep of the A's and their sixth straight win.