Monday, September 17, 2007

Captain, Rocket Propel Yanks

Through six swift innings, Roger Clemens and Curt Schilling shut down the explosive offenses of Boston and New York. Though Red Light worked deeper into the game by managing a more economical pitchcount, The Rocket struck out more batters, only allowing an unearned run to cross homeplate on two hits over six strong.

Once the eighth inning rolled around, the Yankees appeared energized by Joba Chamberlain's performance during a seventh inning in which the 21 year old flamethrower stranded Eric Hinske after his double led off the inning. After Doug Mientchiewicz singled to left, Joe Torre went to his bench, pinch-hitting Jason Giambi for Jose Molina and thereby forfeiting the DH spot. The move would prove to be wise as The Big G let loose with an opposite field ping-pong ball off the Green Monster.

With one out and the go-ahead run standing on third base, Johnny Damon failed to get the run home, spinning a weak loop in front of first base. The spotlight inevitably shone on the Captain, Derek Jeter, who improved on his .430+ batting average with two outs and RISP. After battling Schilling throughout the atbat, Jetes put a hanging splitter into orbit, securing a landing strip along the third row of Monster seats. The three-run jack broke the 1-1 tie, giving Joba and Mariano Rivera a three run cushion to work with.

Turns out the twosome would need every one of those runs. Although his two innings were again impressive, Joba allowed his first earned run via a Mike Lowell solo shot, making it a two-run game for Rivera. After Mo walked Jason Varitek to lead off the inning and Julio Lugo knocked him in on an RBI double, the Yankees closer struggled with his command.

After hitting rookie sensation Jacoby Ellsbury on the first pitch of the atbat and walking Dustin Pedroia, the bases would eventually be juiced for none other than The Big Sloppi. Fortunately for Mariano, his skipper had a golden nugget of advice during a pre-atbat mound conference: "If you get this guy out, then we win the game," Torre quibbed. Though he looked on the precipice of completely imploding, Rivera was somehow able to induce a harmless popfly from David Ortiz and Jeter squeezed the last out. The result of the routine flyout to shallow centerfield was a collective sigh of relief throughout metropolitan area living rooms, and the pictured fist-pump above.

Jeter on his ability to come through in the clutch with such regularity:
"You're not always going to come through, but I enjoy them," Jeter said. "Ever since you're a little kid, you think of being up in big situations. I think you always envision yourself coming through."
We may envision, but Jeter enforces.

  • Unsung hero of the game award goes to Doug Mientchiewicz, who collected two hits and made three dazzling defensive plays in the field.


randy l. said...

did you happen to see the new york post story of gagne drilling rivera in the elbow in the bullpen?
that explains the wildness to varitek and pedroia. hopefully there's no problem from it. of all the weird things to happen.
gagne couldn't have meant it to happen , because with the red sox he hasn't hit anything he's aimed at.

yankeesZrider said...


Yeah Randy, I did see that. I'm actually putting up a post about it.

Maybe the best pitch Gagne's thrown all summer. Instead of telling us how many times David Ortiz texted Alex Rodriguez during the offseason, maybe Peter Gammons could've reported that the Yankees closer was dodging grenades in the Yankees bullpen.

I'm teasing, of course, but I agree it's pretty crazy stuff.