Today’s afternoon special featured another excellent start by Andy Pettitte (8 IP, 1 earned, 4 hits, 1 bb, 4 Ks), timely hitting (7 runs on 0 home runs) and another over-rated National League starting pitcher. Doug Davis struggled to break 85 MPH with his fastball and looked generally disinterested as the Yankees showed him the exit after five sad innings.
Joe surprised me with his lineup today. I was worried that Melky would be sitting out his second consecutive game to make room for A-Rod at DH. Instead, he played Melky in center and gave Damon the day off. Melky was 1-3 out of the leadoff hole, and A-Rod responded reasonably well to the DH slot, 3 for 4, 2 runs, 3 RBIs and a walk. Hideki Matsui has quietly joined the hit parade, his three hits today raised his average to .300 even, and he knocked in three.
In other news, the Sox continue to suck. They lost to Colorado again today, 7-1. The mighty Rockies took two out of three at Fenway, outscoring Boston 20-5 in doing so.
What was a 14.5 game lead on May 30th is now a 7.5 game lead. Boston plays host to Barry Bonds and the San Francisco Giants this weekend. Barry will get to DH, listen to innovative chants like “Ster-oids, ster-oids, ster-oids,” and “BAL-CO, BAL-CO,” from the Fenway faithful. My prediction, three bombs for Bonds over the weekend.
Detroit also lost today, to the Brewers who took the series from the Tigers despite being no-hit in game 1 by Justin Verlander. The Yankee are now tied with Seattle, two games behind Detroit for the Wild Card. What a difference two weeks makes.
Another team who was flying high a few short weeks ago and has since fallen on hard times, the New York Mets, will limp into the Bronx tomorrow for a three-game set. The Mets are coming off a disastrous sweep at the hands of the Dodgers in which they were out-scored 18–5. The Dodgers lit up the Met pitching staff, then fired their hitting coach, Eddie Murray. What does that tell you? It’s funny that you don’t hear much chriping from Mets fans nor Sox fans these days.
That’s enough Bravado. The Yanks are still 7.5 games back, and there’s no guarantee that Giambi won’t be back in July. If he comes back, I wouldn’t put it past Joe to plant Melky firmly on the bench and go back to station-to-station offense. He did it last year with Sheff and Matsui.
Anyway, nine-in-a-row, and counting. The Rocket is on the hill tomorrow night, and I’ll be in the stadium on Saturday to see if Tyler Clippard can duplicate his domination of the Mets. It’s fixing to be a good weekend.
Player of the Game: Hideki Matsui. Pettitte got some consideration, but Godzilla is overdue for a nod.