It’s a Bird …

Bronx, N.Y., August 19, 2015; Yankees 4, Twins 3 — Before Wednesday afternoon, the last 4-3 win I saw on a pair of two-run home runs from the same guy took place 46 years ago, but aside from the home city of the winning club and that description of the offense, the two had very little in common, except that each was a big “late”-season win in a unique season. The Yankees continued to surprise Wednesday afternoon, as first baseman Greg Bird, one of the family jewels they refused to part with in a trade, supplied the power the team has been receiving from veteran hitters all year. Continue reading

One Small Step

Bronx, N.Y., August 5, 2015; Red Sox 2, Yankees 1 —Yankee fans learned the painful lesson yet again Wednesday night that when the team is facing a knuckleballer pitcher, all bets are off. Thirty-year-old journeyman Steven Wright dominated what had been red-hot Yankee bats for eight innings, and walked off with a 2-1 victory for his trouble. I like to think I’ve matured a bit about losses to the Red Sox, but why did he have to do so well when my new kid was making his debut? Continue reading

Noteworthy Numbers

Bronx, N.Y., August 4, 2015; Yankees 13, Red Sox 3 — Enthusiasts looking at the box score for Tuesday’s 13-3 Yankees win over the visiting Red Sox will come away with several obvious impressions as to who had the best game. Chris Young reached base four times, and scored each time, with three rbi’s; while Brian McCann had two extra base hits, and knocked in four. Masahiro Tanaka got the win, and young Sox lefty Henry Owens lost the first major league game he pitched. The Yankees played error-free baseball, while Boston mishandled a key ground ball in the seventh. Continue reading

Masterful Ma Kun

Bronx, N.Y., July 23, 2015; Yankees 9, Orioles 3 — Breaking out from a string of tightly played contests, the Yankees swept the visiting Orioles Thursday afternoon by scoring in four of the five first innings, bashing their way to a 9-1 lead. Chase Headley reached Ubaldo Jimenez for a three-run double in the first, and Jacoby Ellsbury homered for his first of four rbi’s in the second. Continue reading

The Long Goodbye

Bronx, N.Y., July 22, 2015; Yankees 4, Orioles 3 — The Yanks ensured themselves a series victory against the Orioles Wednesday night with yet another one-run win, going 11 games over .500 for the first time this year, and pushing Baltimore six full games back. Ivan Nova was able to go six once his team handed him a 3-0 lead in the first, and chipped in with some key defense along the way. Continue reading

A Brendan Ryan Bargain

Bronx, N.Y., July 21, 2015; Yankees 3, Orioles 2 — The Yanks took game one of a key three-game series with division rival Baltimore Tuesday night, but in retrospect the only easy things about the night were the minuscule rain delay in the second inning, and the way the back of the hometown pen closed out the 3-2 win. Nate Eovaldi held the O’s hitless until an Adam Jones 60-foot roller with two down in the fourth, more than two innings after the Yanks plated their second run with their fourth hit in the second inning. Continue reading

Howe Joe Does It

Bronx, N.Y., July 9, 2015; Yankees 6, A’s 2 — Having watched Joe Girardi pull two guys having more or less effective starts early over the last few days, it was easy to suspect that he’d be replacing starter Masahiro Tanaka with a reliever at any moment once the Yanks took a two-run lead after Thursday afternoon’s game vs the A’s went five. Pushed to 24 pitches in a two-run second, and over 90 once he pounded two-strike-out frames in the fourth and the sixth, the recently DL’d righty was ripe for the showers. Continue reading

A Long, Memorable Day

Bronx, N.Y., Old Timers’ Day, June 20, 2015; Clippers 3, Bombers 2; Yankees 14, Tigers 3 — Always an emotional roller coaster for fans who attend, the Old Timers’ Day opening ceremony Saturday ended with such a shocking — uplifting and poignant, yes — but still shocking conclusion, that it was a more extreme experience than usual, if that’s possible. At the outset, Willie Randolph was so happy he was getting a plaque, as were six Yankee widows — Arlene Howard, Diana Munson, Jill Martin, Helen Hunter, and Kay Hunter, this year joined by Soot Zimmer — to be there at the end, that the unveiling of a plaque for Mel Stottlemyre, who as much as said he won’t be around for the next one in a Gehrig-like speech, shook the crowd to its core. Continue reading

Sam Dys on the Mound

Bronx, N.Y., June 18, 2015; Yankees 9, Marlins 4 — It was a tale of two games in the Bronx Thursday night, or maybe two events. In the game, which more or less came to an end in the eighth inning, Yankee fans were once again reminded that this is not 2014. Certainly, this offense is scarily disappointing for long stretches, with some innings seemingly guaranteed to bring no promise of a score, and others set up for success crashing and burning before our eyes. But the 2015 Yankee club is resilient, and it showed that in the middle innings of a 9-4 win over the Marlins. Continue reading