I don’t really have much to say today. And I won’t have much to say for the next week or so. I’m going on vacation and will have limited access to the interwebs. Which is probably a good thing at this point.
That doesn’t mean I’ll be on vacation from baseball, though. My hubby and I are going to Baltimore to see the Orioles play the Blue Jays, and then we are going up to Philly to see the Phillies vs. the Mets. I’m pretty psyched to relax and root for a team I really don’t care all that much about.
Specifically, I’m excited to see Camden Yards. I’m also looking forward to seeing Nick Markakis, live and in person. And, let’s be honest, who wouldn’t be?
But, really, I can’t wait to watch the Phillies. Why is that? I don’t know. I mean, I love Ryan Howard. But besides that, I just think they are a team I could get behind if I had to root for someone else (the Twins and the Cardinals also appeal to me). My husband, in that awesome way that he has, is determined to get his picture taken with the Phillie Phanatic. We’ll have to make that happen.
So, until I return with tales of non-Yankee baseball adventure, I will just say that I am touched by the support Chien-Ming Wang is receiving from his teammates.
I hope Mariano has his planned chat with him and that Wang regains some of his lost confidence. I don’t know about you, but I find it hard to say bad things about someone who seems like such a nice guy.
***UPDATE***: Wow. I don’t even know what tickets I bought. That’s how addled my brain is. The Orioles are actually playing the Mets and the Phillies are playing the Jays. This is why I need vacation. Desperately.
Nope, by the time I showed up the Yankees had already battled back from a 5-1 deficit, and the score was tied 6-6.
This is what happens when I’m not at work and in front of a computer all day. Instead I was at home, nursing a strained quad and hopped up on pain meds.
I’m always happy to see a comeback victory, of course, but I kind of wish Chien-Ming had put all questions to rest with a solid outing. Now, everyone will go bananas for a week about whether or not he should start against the Red Sox. Here it is: Yes. He. Should.
He has got to get back into a routine. He’s got to get the confidence back that comes from knowing others are behind you and not ready to give you the hook at the drop of a hat. And, I’m sorry, but at this point, I just don’t see a Red Sox game as any more do-or-die than a game against any other team. I just want the Yanks to keep chugging along overall.
Next up, Tampa Bay. I hope the pitching rebounds a bit in this series.
The other night, after a coma-inducing rain delay, Joba Chamberlain was only able to go four innings. I believe he left with the game tied 3-3. Perfect spot for Chien-Ming Wang to come in and get some work, no? No. Instead we got Aceves, who has been good but had pitched a wholly unnecessary inning in the previous game. Things did not end well.
Pete Abraham covered this the other day, questioning why the Yankees would leave a pitcher they once considered an “ace” twisting in the wind. So, last night, when they brought Wang into an 8-2 game, I threw my hands (and the remote) into the air as if to say, WTF?
He did well, considering he was handed a mop. No runs, no hits, two strikeouts, and he threw 18 of his 26 pitches for strikes. Does anyone else feel that he would not be in bullpen limbo if he was more of a squeaky wheel, so to speak?
Forget the Joba debate being ridiculous, this is idiotic. If he’s shown in rehab, minor league stints, and bullpen sessions that he’s much stronger now, why not put him back in the rotation. I don’t think that Phil Hughes deserves to go back to Scranton, but I certainly think that Wang, with his seniority and his overall success, should be given preference. I love Phil, I really do. But I want to know why it’s okay for Wang to sit in the pen and it’s not okay for Phil. Someone, please explain.
I can sum up my feelings about the game last night in one word: Ugh. While I believe that many people deserve a second chance when they make mistakes, this guy isn’t one of them:
He didn’t look as lost as he did at the beginning of the year, but his mechanics don’t look the same to me. He’s not doing that rocking thing he used to do. Maybe that’s better; I don’t know. There were some bright spots, some nice pitches, but it seems like it’s going to be a little longer before he’s totally himself. I did like that he and Dave Eiland were deep in conference on the bench. I like Dave Eiland; he seems to be able to work effectively with the entire staff.
I am going to try to catch bits and pieces of the Saturday and Sunday games, but the rest of my weekend is going to be about working at this:
Listen up, because I’m going to give you some real student-of-the-game analysis from last night’s 11-0 win. Ready? Here it comes:
Yay Phil Hughes!
Yay Jose Molina!
Yay Nick Swisher!
Yay Mark Melancon!
Wasn’t that enlightening? Truthfully, this was a game where I felt the frustration level might hit a breaking point. It was nice to see that the breaking point resulted in 11 runs. It was sort of a “mad as hell, and I’m not going to take it anymore” inning.
The reality check is that it came off Detroit’s bullpen. When Phil Hughes gives you a start like that, you really should be able to get to the other team’s starter. But all’s well that ends well.
And, if you’ll let me geek out for a minute, how cool was it to see Hughes with his confidence back and all his pitches working? He really endeared himself to me last year with the way he handled a difficult year. He seems like a laid-back guy. I know some fans take that as not caring as much about the game, but I don’t think that’s true. I actually think he’s better off coping with disappointment from a more laid-back perspective. By the time I saw him pitch against Pawtucket towards the end of the summer last year, he seemed to be well on his way back. I think guys like him can bounce back, in part, because they don’t overreact to what everyone is saying about them. I hope Chien-Ming Wang will be able to muster the same fortitude.