On Aug. 22nd, the last time Ichiro led off or batted second, he finished the game at .274, just a few points from my prediction that, as long as the Yankees batted him at the top of the order (1st or 2nd), he would hit .280 and be sharp for the post season.
The next night, he was stuck amongst the dregs of the order in Tampa Bay and his average has plummeted like a safe ever since then! And that's because pitchers no longer felt the need to pitch to him and he tried to force hits from pitches that he should have taken, for walks. Last year, he could survive down there because the team had a circular batting order, and often following a walk to Ichiro might come a two run homer from Russel Martin! (I only mention this because Ichiro is signed through next year, as is Wells!)
But after five months of ridiculously great pitching, and just as the hitting began to hit stride, the Yankee pitching imploded, for the most part.
And despite all that, all the Yankees needed was a small win streak of the last four games (thru. Tues.9/17); but the "spent" lineup went totally silent, like a mobster under arrest!
So they lost those last four, and all the bullcrap from the Yankee announcers can't hide the fact that instead of fighting for that second wild card, THIS team is fighting to finish over .500!
Injuries still abound! At least with Pineda, the Yankees will collect from the insurance company, small consolation that it is.
2014 looks worse, if the team tries to get under the 189 luxury tax. (There's the curse of the number 4, still hovering!)
Amazingly, if Cleveland hangs in there, they might use their "midge" army to advance to the ALDS - lol.
When Arnold Doogsley was watching the Red Sox game the other day, he had an idea.
"You like it? My beard? I like it. It looks awesome. I played whiffle ball in gym class when I was smaller. When I noticed that the Red Sox were full of gross looking beards, I decided I wanted to try out. Here I am."
Little did Arnold know, you actually have to be good to be on a Major league baseball team.
"Say what? They have gross beards. I have a gross beard. What gives?"
We aren't sure exactly what gives, but we doubt the Red Sox will be paying attention to Arnold.
In other news, the Yankees suck right now.
In 1963, after a particularly frustrating comedy of errors led to another Mets loss, skipper Casey Stengel uttered those infamous words; "Can't anybody here play this game?"
Back on Aug. 25h, after taking two of three from the Bronx Bombers, Tampa Bay was sitting pretty ... and if they knew the Yankees were going to lose four of the next five, they might have ended things there and then!
Even finishing .500 from that point would have probably done the job - but no, Tampa went into the kind of spiraling collapses which will ensure they never get the kind of gate necessary to make that town a viable attendance draw for the foreseeable future.
Then Baltimore had their chance (no) - then Cleveland had THEIR chance (no), and with the lightest schedule, their road to gold is the widest.
But after last night's Yankee win, even with the news of Derek's season mercifully over, and with Mariano having a career high in blown saves (forgivable at 43), he still leads the league in saves and has less blown ones than the Baltimore reliever with whom he is tied, and where are the Yankees? They are tied in the win column but with two more losses in two more games played, leaving them one game behind in in the second wild card.
But the Yankees have October experience out the wazoo, and Mariano told Joe to burn out his arm if necessary because this season is IT!
So. miracle of miracles, the Yankees are back in it - and the ghost of Casey Stengel is emailing the rest of the contenders with those famous words!
But make no mistake about it - Neither Oakland nor Boston are cakewalks, and Texas at home is still dangerous!
Yankees fan and banana enthusiast Porter Willingsford has decided that MLB, and specifically the American League, should consider adding a third wildcard team for the playoffs.
"3 is a lucky number." Said Porter. "And there's no other reason at all I think there should be a third team. None whatsoever. Zilch."
As it stands now, the wildcard would go to Texas and Tampa. The Yankees are right behind one game back. Adding a third spot would mean the Yankees get in.
"What? Really? Why I had no idea. Oh well, that's cool I guess."
With 16 games to go, buckle up for an exciting finish.
Meet Jersey Steve.
Jersey Steve is a self proclaimed tough guy who loves to start fights.
"I walked into a cupcake place one time and told them their frosting sucks. That pissed them off and it got me into a fight. I love that. I am an adult and I still start fights. It is great. People look up to me for doing it, I think. I go to the gym and take HGH to make me abs look so tough."
So when asked what he thought of the little disagreement last night between Showalter and Giradi he replied.
"Girardi has some big muscles like me. I think Joe should have shown Buck what is up and he should have bucked him up. You get me?"
We are not sure if Girardi was desparate, but the Yankees are losing ground and their chances at making the playoffs.
We will have to wait and see.
If you want to get cheap tickets to the game check out New York Yankees tickets
Will you be going to the game?
A Yankees fan is betting that the Yankees will not win another game this year after seeing the last few games. Brody Billins loves to bet especially if he knows he has a good shot at losing whatever he is betting.
"I once bet that the sun wasn't going to come up one day. Lost that bet. Another time I bet that the news would come out and say that cigarettes were good for you. Lost that one too."
He has since searched for other places to bet.
"I found one guy in an ally. I also looked online for bookies. I will look anywhere I can. Turn up stones. Look under them. You know, whatever."
It is unclear if his bet will pan out, but we will keep you posted.
Let's hope the Yankees can pull out a few wins and make a run at the playoffs. No guarantees.
From left to right in the above photo: J.R. Murphy as Justin Bieber, Cesar Cabral as Rick James, David Adams as Vanilla Ice and Preston Claiborne as Billy Ray Cyrus (though Joba Chamberlain kept calling Claiborne “Joe Dirt”).
In the halcyon days of Yankee history (and that includes the late 90s too), all (we) had to do was throw our gloves on the field and teams would fold like the day's laundry!
So what does it say when ... even without a super winning streak, Tampa Bay starts playing like the June - July - August Yankees, and all it seemed to take was the team getting back it's basic starting team just in time for the final charge.
Wow! They are 2-9 since the Yankee series.
I mentioned several times how just playing .500 ball would make them all but uncatchable but, hehe, they don't read this blog!
So Tampa has to hope the Red Sox (who definitely don't want to see the Yankees in the post season), can help them out. But, failing that, they still have three remaining head to head games with us. But they are in New York where Tampa should not expect the close calls, and drilling any Yankee batters may require rescue by the riot squad!
Then there is Baltimore, but a careful high wire dance step is required because Tampa's best hope is for a down the middle split of those games.
Alfonso has played well above his seasonal stats, and now so has Reynolds. And make a mistake against either one of them promises to get you another ball toseed in by the umpire! Combined, I would say that makes up for the loss of Tex this season (except for defense, which is clearly deficient vs Tex's).
Mariano has now got to deal with the (retirement) renege speculations because, quite simply, he continues to defy his birth certificate. All Yankee fans are glad he has tied Hoffman's MLB record for 9 seasons of 40 or more saves - it is so fitting that he did so.
It's now down to three in the loss column, and Tampa knows its whole season might come down to three lousy games at the big ballpark in the Bronx.
It is always good when the Yankees win and Phil Hughes is on the mound. The only problem with this situation is that Hughes didn't really pitch much of the game.
A rain delay caused his early departure, but that was alright with one fan.
"The guy isn't Kevin Youkilis. He can't do anything right. We want anyone but Hughes in." added Arnold Tricycle Jones.
And that is what happened. Hughes barely pitched so the Yankees were able to get a win. The Yankees are looking to get wins anyway they can, and that is exactly what happened.
They need each game from here on out.
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