Posts Tagged ‘Ivan Nova’

Getting Out of the Trop Alive

Sunday, April 20th, 2014

tropicana_field

Raise your hand if you’re sorry to be leaving the land of catwalks and cowbells.

I didn’t think so. What a weird series. The Yankees looked great against Price in Game 1, then got absolutely blasted to smithereens in Games 2 and 3 and somehow managed to limp to the end with an extra-innings win in Game 4. I’m exhausted just thinking about it.

Obviously, the big news was Nova. He was awful, then he was hurt, now he’s got a potentially season-ending injury if Dr. Tommy John is in his future. What is it with these pitchers? Did they get as many arm injuries in the olden days? My recollection is they pitched until their arms fell off, but maybe I’m forgetting the guys who didn’t.

Nuno was credible today but is he the guy I want to take Nova’s place in the rotation? Not at the moment. I need to see more of him to know. And Phelps doesn’t inspire confidence as a starter now, he just doesn’t.

I know the injuries and roster moves and desperate lineup changes (like Dean Anna having to pitch last night, a la Nick Swisher) are part of the long season, but they’re unsettling. So I’ll try to concentrate on the most positive development so far this season, which is how impressed I am with Jacoby Ellsbury. He rocks.

Happy Easter. On to Boston………

 

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Poetry in Motion

Sunday, April 13th, 2014

Ichiro's catch red sox

There were a lot of heroes in tonight’s ESPN Yankees-Red Sox contest; Nova and Beltran come immediately to mind, with Shawn Kelley right up there. But for me, Ichiro’s spectacular catch was a game saver. Plus it was beautiful to watch, so I present it for repeat viewing. Bravo.

Very sweet to take three of four from the Sox, especially since it’s usually the reverse at this time of year. But not as sweet was the latest parade of injured players. I mean it’s just sick how they’re all going down as if they’ve never run the bases before. I get Jeter and his quad. He’s almost 40. And Roberts’s sore back doesn’t surprise me, given his history of being Nick Johnson in disguise. But Cervelli? Seriously? And then Solarte? And then McCann? Luckily, the latter two stayed in the game, but we can’t keep putting Beltran at first. And who’s our backup catcher now? CC? Crazy.

Oh well. I’ll savor the victory and worry about the injuries tomorrow. It’s an off day. I hope none of the players trips over their Starbucks.

 

 

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A Blowout. How Embarrassing.

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

BigHair

Not a good day for Yankees pitchers, I guess. Nova, seriously? I hope we don’t see too many of these laughers this season, at least not with the Yanks on the losing end.

But how about the torrid hitting of Solarte?! Yikes. I know he’ll cool down eventually, but what a ride in the meantime.

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The Good Nova Was Back

Saturday, September 21st, 2013
(courtesy: Russ and Daughters)

(courtesy: Russ and Daughters)

I missed today’s game (see my Mainly Jane blog), but from what I read Nova pitched a beauty. Good for him to rebound from that awful start in Boston and get his confidence back. The Giants aren’t the Red Sox, but a complete game shutout is nothing to sneeze at.

Sounds like Soriano continued his power hitting, despite his sore thumb, and Nunez had a very big day at the plate. I’ve stopped scoreboard watching for the most part, because I still don’t think the Yankees have much of a shot at a Wild Card spot, but another win is sweet.

Tomorrow is the day I’m both looking forward to and dreading. Not only will it be Pettitte’s last home game but, of course, Mo’s official farewell. The game is on TBS and I really hope they’ll show at least some of the pre-game festivities. If not, I’m sure there will be clips on YES. I also hope Mo gets to pitch at home one last time and that Girardi will put him in the game even if it’s not a save situation.

 

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Yanks Win, But Three More Men Down

Tuesday, September 10th, 2013

upside down

It was a stirring come-from-behind win in Game 2 of this crucial series against the Orioles, and I wish I could write about that instead of the fact that:

  • Austin Romine got hit in the helmet, looked dazed and confused and was said by Girardi to “probably have a concussion.”
  • Ivan Nova, arguably our best pitcher, was pulled early after complaining of tightening triceps, something that’s bothered him for awhile.
  • A-Rod, the game’s hitting star, left the game with tightening in his left hamstring.

Great, right? Such a shame because we actually crept closer to the Rays for the second Wild Card spot tonight.

Mo was brilliant getting the save after pitching in both the eighth and ninth – again. With so many other relievers hurt or unavailable or ineffective, it’s ironic that he’s the last one standing. Sounds like we’ll have Robertson back tomorrow though.

Still, thanks to clutch hitting and good (except for one inning) starting pitching in this one, the fat lady hasn’t sung and it isn’t quite over for the boys. If only they were all healthy. Sigh.

 

 

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My Stomach Hurts

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

woman-with-stomach-ache

I’m serious. It’s still in knots an hour after that game. Talk about highs and lows. Sheesh. That one was a killer, although it was extremely entertaining, as most Yankees-Red Sox games are.

The first surprise (and not in a good way) was Nova. Once again, the old adage of what seems like a nice match-up on paper doesn’t always turn out that way. He’s been our best pitcher lately, but not tonight. Gone without getting to the sixth.

Another surprise: Joe’s use of Mo. Again. Why not use Robertson for two innings since he clearly had his stuff tonight (unlike last night when I trashed him)? Mo’s been in each of the last few games and I was sure he’d be unavailable. Even so, he was so close to a save, but a combo of a not-so-great pitch and Romine’s error (not a good night for him at all) and Jeter’s non-catch of Romine’s throw did him in.

And then there was Joba. Really, Joe? Why do you keep going to him in big situations? Yes, he got robbed by Joe West on that checked swing call, but he can’t be trusted. His ball doesn’t move. He doesn’t fool hitters.

Bravo to the offense. They came allllllll the way back in a gutsy, exciting way, only to peter out at the end. Such a shame.

Now if only my stomach would stop hurting. Ouwwww.

 

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Ace!

Saturday, August 31st, 2013

ace-of-spades

What else is there to say about Nova’s performance today. It was the ace-like start we’ve been missing from Kuroda and CC – just brilliant. The ninth inning got me worried when the O’s had the tying run at the plate and Nova was up to 102 pitches, but I was glad Joe left him in to finish up and get the complete game shutout.

The offense wasn’t as robust as last night but it didn’t need to be with him on the mound. Funny how Overbay, the forgotten man who wasn’t supposed to play, ended up with a bunch of hits.

So two in a row against a wild card rival. Not too shabby, Yankees. Finish the job tomorrow and give us hope that we can stay in this crazy race somehow.

 

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An Even Better Janer, Thanks To Him

Wednesday, August 14th, 2013
Photo: nypost.com

Photo: nypost.com

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.

 

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I Called This One

Saturday, August 3rd, 2013

Woman and Megaphone

Nova and the Padres’ pitcher were locked in a scoreless battle tonight. At one point the Yankees hadn’t so much as managed a hit or a walk and I feared we’d get perfecto-ed. But then I said to Michael with Granderson coming up, “Our only chance of winning this is if someone runs into one” – i.e sticks his bat out and goes deep. Which is exactly what happened. Granderson struck the ball with the power he used to and suddenly it was 2-0.

With the lead, Nova continued his mastery over the Padres until Robertson and Mo took care of the eighth and ninth, and he finally got the win he should have had the last couple of times. Good for him and good for the Yankees. The offense is still anemic, but maybe Granderson’s blast is a sign of things to come from him. Is it enough to move the team into contention? Doubtful.

And now there’s Jeter’s calf. Apparently, running gingerly wasn’t enough to keep him from injuring himself yet again. What a mess, along with the A-Rod mess, which only gets stranger by the hour. The Yankees really must despise him.

 

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Apparently, This Was More Entertaining Than Our Game

Sunday, July 28th, 2013

David Ortiz smashes phone

Gone batty: David Ortiz ejected after arguing balls and strikes, destroys bullpen phone
By Mark Townsend | Big League Stew/Yahoo Sports

Boston Red Sox designed hitter David Ortiz officially flipped his lid on Saturday night.
After striking out in the seventh inning against Jairo Asencio, Ortiz turned his attention to home plate umpire Tim Timmons to argue a 3-0 strike call earlier in the at-bat. To Timmons’ credit, he let Ortiz show him up by pointing to his helmet — indicating he felt the pitch in question was too high — and give him an earful all the way back to the dugout without reacting. In most cases, Ortiz’s actions constitute an immediate ejection, but Timmons was willing to move on had he dropped his case peacefully.
Instead, Ortiz went bonkers and ended up smashing the bullpen phone in the visiting dugout at Camden Yards into smithereens with his bat.
Ortiz’s violent meltdown didn’t really fall under the entertainment category. It was actually very dangerous and a little scary as shrapnel from the bat and phone flew all over the dugout. In fact, some of the shrapnel nearly took a chunk out of teammate Dustin Pedroia.

And that didn’t sit well with the veteran second baseman.
Cooler heads prevailed in that case, and thankfully nobody in the dugout was injured as a result of Ortiz’s recklessness.
It was at this point that Timmons finally gave him the thumb, which was met with this very scary look.
With the dust and particles now settled, I think it’s safe to say a suspension will be coming Ortiz’s way in the coming days. It probably won’t be a lengthy ban, but it’s a good time to send another reminder that such violent outbursts can’t and won’t be tolerated by Major League Baseball.
Fortunately for the Red Sox, a suspension is the only thing they have to worry about right now. That’s s much better outcome than setting a timetable for Pedroia’s return had one of those pieces of shrapnel found its way into his eye.

In our game, on the other hand, the Yankees went down to the Rays without a whimper, wasting a superb performance by Ivan Nova. What an awful season this has been. It’ll be nice to see Jeter in the lineup, if only as a reminder of what might have been.

 

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