Posts Tagged ‘Angels’

All Hail Nuno

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014


He doesn’t look like a pitcher. He’s sort of ungainly. And I wasn’t expecting a whole lot from him in tonight’s series finale against the Angels, but he very nearly shut them down completely. He was great – just what this team needed.

The tribute to Jeter before the game was very classy and respectful, and he seemed to enjoy it, especially the presentation of the pinstriped paddle board. I was hoping they’d do a funny scoreboard video starring the rally monkey, but it was a straightforward montage of clips – the same clips we’ll likely see at every stadium this season. It’s still hard to believe this is a farewell tour for the Captain, whether he calls it that or not. I can’t imagine the Yankees without him, but I do get that the time is right for him to walk away. I hope he puts together a group of investors and buys the Yanks someday. I loved his homer, btw.

Meanwhile, the poor Angels made a mess of the early innings tonight. It was a comedy of errors and miscues for them right from the get-go. Oh well. Not my problem. I was just glad we won. We left the bases loaded twice, but I can’t complain about nine runs.




Tuesday, May 6th, 2014
Photo: Kim Klement/USA Today Sports

Photo: Kim Klement/USA Today Sports

He may have gray hair nowadays, but Brian Roberts proved tonight that he can still deliver in the clutch. His homer to put the Yanks ahead of the Angels was a nice surprise. Too bad Kuroda didn’t get the win, because he pitched great, and the “w” went to Shawn Kelley, who did not. Robertson got the save – I feel as if it’s been ages since I saw him on the mound – and the Yankees halted their skid. Whew. Fun game to watch except for Solarte’s adventures in the infield.


What a Nightmare

Monday, May 5th, 2014


If I lived back east, I would have been thrilled to sleep through tonight’s atrocity at Angels Stadium. Instead, I had to witness Yankees’ relief pitchers walk six batters – the Angels actually batted around without a hit – and blow what had been a tense pitchers’ duel between Phelps and Weaver.

Home plate ump Laz Diaz didn’t help. With bases loaded with Yankees and nobody out, Gardner stepped in and was the beneficiary of a couple of truly bad calls. Girardi came out to argue, got tossed and hung around to have what looked like an aneurism. He and Diaz have history and Diaz has ejected him before, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen Joe go nuts like he did tonight. Sheesh.

So yeah, Diaz is a lousy ump, but that doesn’t excuse the parade of grotesqueness that was Shawn Kelley, Matt Thornton and Preston Claiborne. The game had been tied at 1-1 and what did they do? Lose the game. How do you not throw strikes? Ever?

Lost in all this was Phelps’ terrific performance. Just great. Ichiro laid down the most beautiful bunt; I hope the other players were taking notes. And Jeter’s bat had life after all, although he did hit into a double play and kill a rally.

I’ll try to swallow this bitter pill, but it’ll be hard.



So Long, Angels

Monday, April 28th, 2014


I always enjoy beating the Angels. Maybe it’s because they’ve given the Yankees so much trouble over the years when guys like Garret Anderson, Howie Kendrick and Chone Figgins drove us mad. Or maybe it’s because Mike Sciosca’s teams are supposed to be the kings of small ball and beat us with their scrappy play.

So it was especially sweet to win this weekend’s series against them, despite the addition of a healthy Pujols and his 500 home runs and despite the endless string of injuries to our players. (Solarte has a sore shoulder? Gardner has a sore foot? Billingsly, who was up in the majors for exactly five minutes, is on the DL already?)

Last night’s game was fun – tense, but fun. Everybody was saying how “off” Tanaka was. Really? I’ll take his “off” any day. True, he actually walked people and hit a batter, but how about all those strikeouts and how he never unravels? I think he’s turning into our ace, I really do, and when he pitches I have so much confidence that we’ll win the game. Of course, we couldn’t hit their flame thrower, but in the end we didn’t have to. We walked and passed-balled our way to enough runs to get it done.

And now we have the red hot Cano to look forward to. He’s been tearing it up for Seattle, so I’m sure he’ll be just as tough against the Yanks. It’ll be great to see him again, if bittersweet.




Friday, April 25th, 2014

Tonight’s game at the Stadium against the Angels actually made me laugh. It was yet another lopsided score, this time with the Yanks being on the losing end of the reverse Janer. Nothing went right, and it wasn’t worth watching. At all. I felt sorry for the kid they brought in after Kuroda’s early departure. He took one for the team, but oh my.

“We didn’t pitch well,” Brett Gardner said. “We didn’t hit well.”

That about sums it up, Gardy. Better luck tomorrow.


You Mean We Can’t Win Every Game Now?

Thursday, August 15th, 2013

LaughingWomanI knew the streak had to come to an end at some point, but I was hoping for a four-game sweep of the Angels. Hughes wasn’t bad at all, so that wasn’t the problem. C.J. Wilson was. He’s tough, no question, and I wish Cashman had signed him when he was a free agent. The Yanks did have scoring chances from what I saw as I watched off and on throughout the afternoon, and they did stage a ninth inning comeback. But thanks to a massive fail by Boone Logan and an out-of-nowhere offensive burst from the little known former Yankee, Chris Nelson, the deficit was too great to overcome.

Oh well. Now it’s on to Boston where it won’t get any easier. I’d say this is a do-or-die series at Fenway this weekend. If we take the series, there’s still a fighting chance for us. If we drop the series or, worse, get swept, it’ll be see you next year.





An Even Better Janer, Thanks To Him

Wednesday, August 14th, 2013


Soriano was pure magic tonight in the Yankees’ second blowout in a row. My dearly departed grandmother could have hit some of Jered Weaver’s fat pitches into the seats, but Soriano did it at just the right moments and with great style. I agree with the fan above: Welcome Back, Sori.

Oh, those precious runs, one after the other. When was the last time the offense overshadowed a starting pitcher’s performance? Nova wasn’t un-hittable by any means, but he kept the Angels from scoring more than a couple of times. I’ve gotten to the point where I really look forward to the games he pitches, almost as much as I look forward to Kuroda’s outings.

Can this team keep it up? Who knows, but this little streak has been a lot of fun and has made me love watching again.



An Actual Janer!

Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

LaughingWomanAre the Angels the new Twins? All I know is I wish the Yankees could face their pitching every day of the week, because the offense exploded tonight and it doesn’t happen very often. It was especially satisfying to see Soriano give us the homers he was brought to the team to deliver. Nunez, too, had a good night at the plate, although his error-plagued defense continued. CC finally got a win, but what was up with all the walks? At least he wasn’t pounded, I guess. And poor Bettances didn’t make much of a first impression, having to be bailed out by Joba, the mop up guy.

Anyhow, it was fun to have the Yanks scoring all those runs, not to mention win their third game in a row. Is this what is known as a second half streak? I hope so.


Maybe The Angels Should Have Brought Him

Monday, August 12th, 2013

rally monkey

They almost came back in the ninth, and it would have been a kick in the teeth if they’d rallied, especially since Kuroda was so damn good yet again. (Cy Young Award? I’d vote for him in a heartbeat.) But Robertson, after doing his usual scary reliever thing with the crowd cheering “We want Mo!,” clipped the Angels’ wings. Whew.

Very nice to see Granderson get his power swing back with that homer. And Gardner continues to be an RBI star this season. I’ve been trying not to mention A-Rod, because his presence bothers me, but he seems to figure into every game since he came back, for better or worse, and his caught stealing blunder was weird even for him. Talk about a deer in the headlights.

The Angels aren’t the Angels of old, those tormentors who beat us time after time in painful ways. And I wish this Yankees team had the offense of old instead of having to eek out every little run. But that’s the situation and a win is a win, and I’ll take it gladly.



That Was Just Insane But I’ll Take It

Sunday, June 16th, 2013

The bottom of the ninth was all about bloops – broken bat singles, bloop singles, dunkers, rollers and that ball that Vernon “Molasses” Wells couldn’t get to. (I know, he was trying to keep the ball in front of him, but still.) I blame Suzyn Waldman for almost jinxing the game into the loss column. I’d been watching on TV but switched to WCBS for the ninth as I was getting ready to leave the house.

“Oh, John,” said Suzyn. “That long plane ride home is gonna be so much better after this one.”

She was referring, of course, to the fact that the Yankees owned a 6-0 lead with CC going for a complete game shutout. And then all hell broke loose. CC lost it. Girardi brought in Robertson, who was too high-wire even for Joe, who then brought in Mo to close the door on the Angels once and for all. But then came the various bloops. Suddenly, the score was 6-5 and I wasn’t going anywhere. I turned the TV back on and gulped as I watched Pujols step up to the plate. Could the Yanks really lose this? Could Mo really blow it? Would the losing streak continue?

No, no and no.

I guess the important thing is they won the game, but I didn’t feel great about it.

I hope the off day tomorrow gives all the players a chance to decompress. I know I will. Then comes the series with the Dodgers, which I’m looking forward to. My friends here are Dodgers fans so I’ve gotten familiar with a lot of their guys and it’s always nice to see Donnie Baseball even if it’s in another uniform.