Saturday, October 7, 2017

A pineapple. A big, hairy, toxic spike-tipped pineapple.

Ugly truth here: I missed most of last night's debacle. Unavoidable circumstances, plus the ridiculous five o'clock face-off. In the end, I managed to find a big spiky pineapple and fit the thing snugly up my Larry Rothschild - I watched the unfurling devastation in a Yankee bar, where the atmosphere ranged from wild prison riot to NPR fundraiser.

I saw Castro's lunge play, converted into a nifty force at second. I saw Didi's diving catch. I saw Big Toe get picked off, because once again, we could not execute a bunt. I saw Dellin's overpowering inning, and then I saw him walk the lead-off batter in our crushing 13th, leading to what everyone with a diapered Larry Rothschild knew was coming.

I suspect that I saw the second-to-last game Joe Girardi ever manages for the Yankees.

Likewise, I may have seen the end of Brett Gardner's great Yankee run. And Dellin. I guess he's gone. And Castro, maybe. And, hell, probably the beloved Big Toe himself just got picked off, this time for posterity. Massive changes are coming - think of our lineup as Puerto Rico, before the storm - and all that stands between them is a FEMA trailer... one more game against a vastly superior opponent.

There's no shame in losing to Cleveland. When I look at their lineup, they have everything - rising stars, grizzled veterans, a great bullpen, solid defense - they are not the Redsocks, Knicks or a Friends reunion. And you cannot cede to a great team the cashback opportunities that the Yankees offered last night. We thrice left the winning runs on base, en route to the staggering collapse that will not stop hurting in my chafed and puckered lifetime. Winter is coming, folks. Baton down the hatches. It's going to turn cold.

One more game. I'd like to be defiant, and maybe between now and Sunday, I'll get lippy and shout curses at the coming 50-foot wave. But we cannot un-see what happened last night, and we cannot un-know the ugly truth: This wasn't our year. 

17 comments:

cabish47 said...

At risk of being a perky, Polyannaish fool, just getting to a series where the Indians demolish us made the season a success. Even an attack by another giant pineapple cannot wipe out a better than dreamed of season.

But Girardi still makes me wonder.

Local Bargain Jerk said...


Here's all you need to know.

This article was not written by a NY beat writer and not written by a Cleveland Plain Dealer and not written by some Boston scumbag. It was written by a national writer presumably with no axe to grind.

It is objectively plain that Girardi is an imbecile. This is an observation with which his own players agree.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

Taking CC out was a bigger blunder. I hate him and I coudn't even see the game because MLB sucks. I pay for it at home. My service will let me stream it. MLB blocks it. They suck almost as much as girardi.

KDq said...

Girardi has no respect Gary. Why not challenge that HBP? To not disrupt the pitchers rhythm? Ha! That’s a good one! Girardi manages his last Yankees game Sunday. Past time for a change.

BernBabyBern said...

The optimist's view is that this team wasn't supposed to be here, so we're playing with house money.

But when you're at the casino and you lose badly because you played stupid, you're still pissed off, house money or not.

KD said...

“Playing with house Money” is an excuse for failure.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Okay, here's my Double JuJu Reverse on all this:

Forget the egregious, awful, totally rotten and stupid Girardi blunder. What's done is done and cannot be undone, as a great man (Casey Stengel? John Sterling?) once said.

Look at it this way:

Going into Game Two, the high pressure system hanging over the Yankees like one more territory-wrecker up from the Caribbean was that we could not hit the Indians' lights-out staff. Everyone believed it, including yours truly.

Hit Corey Kluber? Nope, nada, nevvvvvahh gonna happen.

And then...BOOM! Eight runs. EIGHT RUNS.

Don't you suspect the Yankees' doe-eyed young hitters are much less obsessed about Girardi's imbecility than we are?

I'd bet dollars to doughnuts (all right, pretty much an even bet these days, but still!) that they are telling each other right now, 'Hey, we BELTED that guy! We can hit anyone they throw at us!'

It's the sort of revelation that quickly become fact, and fact becomes runs, and that rhymes with stuns, and I'm tellin' you that once those pumped-up out-of-town Jaspers bring their sorry Native American-mocking hides into New York City we're gonna stun 'em. We're gonna run 'em.

We got big hits off 'em, and little hits, and hits from our catcher, and hits from the Oft-Hurt Hicks, and we haven't even activated The Golem yet, our very own, avenging giant. And now it's THEIR bullpen which is ragged and jagged, and we're about to break it open if we can just get at it again.

Cue the music!

(To thoroughly mix my musicals)

"You
Gotta
Have
Heeeeaaaaarrrtttt!
Miles an' miles an' miles of heeeeeeeaaaaaarrrrrrtttt!
When the odds are sayin' you'll never win
That's when the grin
Should staaaarrrrtttt!

A great manager
We haven't got!
A great third sacker
We haven't got!
A great GM
We haven't got!

Whatta we got?
WE GOT HEEAAAARRRTTTT!"

Alphonso said...

LBJ - I am really sorry that you likely won't get to the stadium ( for a game, anyway) on Monday.

Rufus - I tend to agree about the CC decision. I wanted him pulled when he walked the first batter in the 6th, but changed my view when he got the next guy on a soft liner to Didi. I would have given him one more out, then two.

But none of that makes up for Girardi's arrogance and stupidity later. His legacy will, forever, be that blunder.

The loss is on him.

The failure to advance is on him.

The team cannot possibly respect him from this point forward.

Now we have the same situation as the NFL Giants. A lousy GM and a worse coach ( manager ). The difference: the Yankees have a chance to be getting much better. The Giants are going the other way.

Sometimes it takes a " deus ex machina" to create change. Girardi's blunder is his. A loss to the Chargers ( nearly an impossibility ) would do it for the Giants.

Alphonso said...

Can someone tell me who " The Big Toe" is? I didn't see any of the game after it went from 8-3 to 8-7, and I new we were finished.

Local Bargain Jerk said...


Big Toe = Torreyes

Anonymous said...

I'd like to correct a widespread misconception about Girardi on this blog--that he's flawed because he's a rigid sabremetric manager--Joey Binders as the cliche has it, as though you don't see EVERY major league manager consulting stat books during a game now--just as you see coaches doing in every other sport.

But Girardi is not really a sabremetric manager--not nearly as much as far better managers such as Joe Maddon and Terry Francona. Girardi's premature yanking of Sabathia was just sweaty, temperamental, masochistic panic. He had a five-run lead and should have been exerting every effort to AVOID using Green and Robertson, the prize bullpen assets that he wore down to the bone just two days earlier. With a five-run lead, he could have let Sabathia go two more innings--or up to 100 pitches (he was only at 77 when removed)--and, as long as things remained under control, brought in Garcia or Montgomery to get to the eighth and THEN Betances and Chapman. Instead, he perversely managed as though the Yankees were behind by five runs. Just bizarre.

Now let's look at the fiasco of Girarid' botching of the top of the eleventh inning. Todd Frazier leads off with a two-base error--hence, YOU ALREADY HAVE A RUNNER IN SCORING POSITION. Nevertheless, with the agile bat of Gardner at the plate, likely to produce the hit needed to score the run or the walk needed to keep the rally going, he unaccountably decides to GIVE AWAY AN OUT by having Gardner bunt and thus push the Yankees one third of the way toward offensive death for the inning, and provably lessening the chances of scoring at all. He pinch-runs Torreyes--a weird maneuver since he was intending to sacrifice-bunt anyway (Torreyes's speed would have been critical only in an attempt to score from second on a single), with the predictably catastrophic results.

NOW . . . for a contrast of managerial styles, and for an understanding of how an appreciation of sabremetrics INCREASES chances of winning: Austin Jackson walks and steals second. So . . . runner on second and no one out. What does Girardi do in that situation? Of course, he bunts, which may not work, and even if it does work, brings your team one giant stride closer to offensive death for the inning and REDUCES the odds of your scoring the run. And what does Francona do? He abjures the bunt, because, like Girardi in the eleventh, HE ALREADY HAS A FAST RUNNER IN SCORING POSITION AND A GOOD HITTER AT THE PLATE. Not being a dumbass and having studied the relevant numbers, he has Gomes swing away--and ballgame over.

All you KD-style philistines who years for bunts and more bunts, steals and more steals, more hit-and-runs, remain blissfully unaware that statistical study has PROVED that, on average (with certain exceptions) are losing strategies. You guys are like the bozos who zoom to the blackjack table in Vegas without having studies the odds of various kinds of hands. It's not those bozos who clean up in Vegas--it's the card counters and math whizzes who have mastered the odds of various scenarios.

Girardi, contrary to myth, is not Joey Binders. He's just an erratic, cold, unappealing creep who doesn't really have a good grasp of strategy and who has now lost the clubhouse. Francona is the opposite on all counts--that's one of many reasons why the Indians are winners now, and the Yankees are losers.

The baseball gods are capricious--we cannot rule out a miraculous rising from the dead for the Yankees. But it will be in spite of, not because of, Girardi's inept managing.

Anonymous said...

"years" in paragraph five should be "yearn"--typo, typing fast

Anonymous said...

paragraph four, not five--I'll get this right yet. I'll just concede any other typos to posterity.

Anonymous said...

Agreed, that Tito is a much better manager - - and, seemingly, nicer human being, as well (never seen a sign of arrogance from him, unlike Girardi. I hope, as predicted, he's gone from our scene, sooner, rather than later.

You DO need to qualify your FIFTH paragraph with ("with certain exceptions"), though, as Tito DID utilize the bunt successfully in each game, as well, and cashed in, both times; granted, it was more obvious that it was the winning play at least one of those times (#9 hitter up, men on first & second, no one out). There is still room in the game , in many situations, for old-style movement of runners. Another example is how Tito started a runner off first multiple times, and avoided double plays on ground-balls which otherwise would likely have produced one.

Tito MIGHT apply sabremetics in some of these situations, but I rarely, if ever, see him looking in a binder; more often than not, he goes with what his well-learned experience tells him to do.

Your points above are largely well-taken, but i wouldn't be so damned certain of myself, IIWY - - you're setting yourself up for a fall, if you do.

Also, your Vegas analogy is only appliclable in that those who can count & remember every single card are the most successful; same applies in contract bridge: oft-times the best players remember every single card which has been played (or tipped off by a less-experienced player).

You can call me, or KD, or LBJ, or anyone else on this site a Phillistine anytime you wish, but it won't get you wour first friend - - which you could apparently use.

Now - - why don't you remind everyone of your psychic abilities, since you have so amazingly (and wrong-headedly) divined the size of my member - - and my brain - - in recent days. Go ahead. Who gives a xxxx?? LB (No M)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for blathering on for a few hundred words and saying absolutely nothing except reminding us about your teeny-weeny-peeny. And you're wrong--a rudimentary knowledge of odds on given hands can help you boost your chances at blackjack. AND--a run-expectancy table IS the equivalent of knowing all the cards--which you would know if you had any previous acquaintance with an RET, which you obviously don't.

My point is that Francona did not bunt in THAT situation in the 13th--essentially the same kind of situation in which Girardi did stupidly signal for a bunt in the 11th. I wasn't talking about other kinds of situations, and I've stated in the past that there are unique circumstance that favor a sac bunt more than others--I've always been careful to state that ON AVERAGE it's a losing strategy, and the best managers do it the least, because they study this stuff--because they have more at stake than juvenile flame wars on the Internet.

Anonymous said...

You can't resist taking the bait, and showing all of us your inferiority complex, can you??

Make sure you qualify ALL your statements, so that you can always come back and say that the particular instance was not what you meant.

You have yet to learn a lesson I learned when I was a young man: that nobody gives a damn how big your dick is - - just, maybe, your mouth. There's an old saying in Spanish: "En boca cerrada no entran moscas" (Flies do not enter a closed mouth)...and further, it is going to be difficult to make people LIKE you (in case you even care), if they don't first RESPECT you. So far, you've given us precious little reason to do that latter thing. Check your AET (admiration expectancy tables) for that. LB (No J)

Anonymous said...

Listen, moron--only an illiterate like you makes unqualified statements as though he were in possession of absolute truth. I'm not taking any bait--I'm attempting to have a coherent discussion with you, and now it appears that you're just a puling, malicious psychotic who can't read and can't follow a train of thought. You want me to mollify your primitive mind by saying something simple like "sacrifice bunting is always bad, for all time, and in all places." But that would be untrue--and stupid, like you. In general, an on average, sac bunts provably reduce the likelihood of scoring in an inning, but before your post above--about a week ago when this first came up--I already specified the exceptions that you cite as though no one had ever thought of them before--like a delusional doofus. My points on bunting in this case pertained ONLY to the exactly parallel situations faced by Girardi in the eleventh and Francona in the thirteenth, and their divergent approaches and results. You're too stupid to understand this, so you introduce instances that I didn't discuss and that have no bearing on the point I was making--which was never to say that sac bunts are always useless. It's you that is always useless--and viscerally stupid and terminally tormented, like a dying mad dog.

You state above that "your points are largely well taken" and then, because you can't refute or even make a modest case against any of them, you pop in another thread characterizing those very same points as "a verbal bag of garbage," without even a token effort at serious counterargument or refutation. You don't even qualify as a subhuman--even that insults the class of humans, to be associated with you even by contrast. You're a suppurating wound, a glimpse into the abyss of being: a reminder that the impending extinction of the human race from anthropogenic climate disruption in the next hundred years is, on balance, a consummation devoutly to be wished.