26 Apr 2010
Watching yesterday’s game was like watching Game 3 of the ALCS Joe Girardi went to "the book" and it cost the Yankees. Yes, Kendry Morales is a better hitter against RHP than LHP, but all Girardi needed to do was look at what his LHP was doing. He walked Abreu, he hit Hunter, he got a lucky out against Matsui, it certainly seemed like it wasn’t going to be Marte’s day. That’s why it made a lot of sense to intentionally walk Morales. For whatever reason, Morales kills the Yankees and putting him on was a safe move. Having Marte be the one to put him on made even more sense because then Robertson could come in and try and throw strikes to Rivera. But for some unknown reason, Girardi changed his mind after ball 1 and the rest as they say is history.
Now, it’s important to note the Yankees were losing the game at the time so who knows if they would have mounted a comeback. You can’t say that Girardi’s call lost them the game, but you have to hope he learns something from this.
As Yogi said, "it’s getting late early" with Javy Vazquez. What you had to hope for as a Yankees’ fan was that Vazquez would go out to Oakland and Anaheim and pitch well. Instead he was mediocre against the A’s and terrible against the Angels. Yes, Marcus Thames should have caught that ball, but a good pitcher picks up his fielders and Vazquez is not a good pitcher right now.
The bigger problem is this has a good chance of turning into an Ed Whitson situation. For those of you who don’t remember Whitson, he was a Yankee pitcher in the mid 80’s who was so viciously booed at home that the Yankees started using him only on the road. Vazquez isn’t there yet, but if he gets bombed on Saturday things are going to get ugly. Fans are not going to care that Melky has a .440 OPS (yup .440) or that Vizcaino has a plus-4 ERA right now, they are going to want blood. Saturday’s game is going to be a big one.