Posts Tagged ‘Raul Ibanez’

The Yankees Were Due For A Laugher

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

What else can you do but laugh when your starter can’t pitch his way out of the first inning? Hughes has been pretty good lately, so I’ll give him a pass on tonight’s meltdown. I guess. Ibanez was bound to hit at least one homer against him, since he’s hit them against everyone else at Yankee Stadium. Why Cashman didn’t hang onto Rauuuul I’ll never know. But bottom line? The Mariners are a weak-hitting team that nevertheless scored 12 runs, which proves that anybody can beat anybody on any given day.

This blowout reminded me of that game against the Rays when Swisher pitched. Instead, we had Alberto Gonzalez taking a turn on the mound, with Wells at second and Stewart at first. Craziness.

Preston Claiborne seems to be impressing everyone. Maybe he’s the new Joba, as in the Joba of ’07.

 

 

Share

ALCS Game 2: The Agony and the Ecstasy

Saturday, October 13th, 2012

Actually, I should have worded it in reverse: The Ecstasy and the Agony.

First came Ibanez’s improbable homer in the bottom of the ninth and the reaction of my not-favorite-person Valverde.

I couldn’t believe Raul did it again. Could. Not. Believe. It.

But the ecstasy didn’t last. Not only could the Yankees not score any more runs, but – curiously – Girardi went to Phelps instead of using Robertson for another inning, and things unraveled quickly. I could go on about Swisher’s somersault in right, not to mention his failures at the plate along with Cano’s, or A-Rod getting pulled for Chavez when others were struggling even more, or how angry Pettitte looked when he came out of the game, but all I really care about right now is this.

Seeing Jeter go down felt like Mo all over again and, as it turns out, their situations aren’t dissimilar: Jeter’s fractured ankle means he’s done for the rest of the the season. It was so hard to watch him not get up, to cry out in pain, to lean on others to carry him off the field. I’m still sick about it as I type this.

But I remind myself that he had a brilliant year, and no broken ankle will take that away from him. The Yankees will carry on and do their best for their captain. That’s all we can ask for.

As for the media, they need to stop talking about Jeet as if he died. No more eulogies. Seriously.

Share

ALDS Game 3: Holy Ibanez !&*$%+_@!!!

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

AL BELLO/GETTY IMAGES

There really are no words…

But I’ll find some.

Mystique and aura were alive and well at Yankee Stadium as tonight’s improbable 12th inning win demonstrated. Even though the Yanks were down 2-1 for much of the game, it felt like the score was 100-1. Kuroda was great on the big stage and got no run support, as usual. Every at bat, except two by Jeter and Martin, was an exercise in futility. And I’m talking about everyone’s at bats, not just A-Rod’s. When Jeter started hobbling around, I figured we were really in trouble. Even Mo’s presence, both on the mound for the ceremonial first pitch and in the dugout urging his teammates on, didn’t calm me.

And then, as if by a miracle, Girardi “went with his gut,” as he said in his post-game remarks. No binder. No matchup mumbo-jumbo. Just his instinct. And what did his instinct tell him in the bottom of the 9th? Pinch hit Ibanez for A-Rod. It was a bold move and look how it turned out.

Boom. Tie score. Suddenly, we had a ballgame.

D-Rob’s second inning of work in the top of the 12th nearly caused me to have a psychotic break. Why didn’t he get out of Tex’s way and let him catch that ball???? And then the bobble over to the first? Crazy making. But his pitching was impressive and he ended up with the win, thanks, of course, to Rauuuul.

When TBS first showed the homer, I swear I thought it was a replay of the first one. It was only when he was mobbed at home plate that it dawned on me that we’d won the game. Wow. Just wow.

Why Matusz would throw him anything good to hit I have no idea, but not my problem. I’m just so happy right now.

And I’m hoping Hughes will finish this series and give us a chance to breathe.

 

 

Share

Rauul Is So Coool

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012

Well.

Where do I begin? It’s a good thing I’m only writing this post instead of speaking it, because I’m totally hoarse right now. What a game. I may never recover.

Things were looking so bleak for so many innings. Phelps was very good, but the offense? It was back to its old tricks of stranding runners. Tex was a terrible cleanup hitter (Girardi played the binder instead of putting Cano in the #4 spot) and the RISP fails were painful to watch – almost as painful as watching Gardner get picked off when he came in to pinch run.

But the pen, like Phelps, was spectacular. Except for Soriano, who had a dismal 9th before recovering in the 10th. (I doubt we’ll see him tomorrow.)

Every extra innings game is tense, but this one carried such significance. I was grateful for that little bird that hopped onto the field, probably looking for some hot dog bun crumbs to eat, because it provided a little levity. Maybe it was a Rally Bird, judging by the way things turned out.

Did anyone think, in a million years, that Cervelli would score the winning run, let alone catch for the first time all year? But there he was in the 12th.

The hero of the game, of course, was Ibanez, who hit the bomb that got us into extras. Girardi had that move right, didn’t he? And then for him to knock in Cervelli with the game winner? If AJ were still around, Raul’s bald head would have been covered in shaving cream instead of a bucket of cold water, but I’m sure the hugs he got from everybody were good enough.

I’m breathless. Wow. Just wow.

One more tomorrow night. Please, Yankees.

 

 

 

Share

Spare Parts

Sunday, August 5th, 2012

What struck me about today’s victory over the Mariners, aside from how sweet it always is to win as opposed to the opposite, is that guys like Ibanez, Nix and Stewart made important contributions.

Ibanez has been a bona fide star over his long career, but at 40 he wasn’t expected to produce the way he has this season. I certainly didn’t expect it, especially after his horrendous spring training. He’s just so impressive, whether it’s clocking a ball into the seats or getting a hit after a tough at bat. A professional hitter, that’s what he is.

Nix has been a journeyman – nothing fancy, just a guy who keeps grinding in almost a Brosius blue collar way. His throws at third really impressed me today, and his offense has been a pleasant surprise.

And Stewart? I didn’t have a clue. I think many of us were wondering why Cervelli didn’t get the backup catcher job instead. But “Stewy,” as I’m sure Girardi calls him, manages to make something good happen whenever he plays. And catching Sweaty Freddy with all his walks and wild pitches can’t be easy.

Of course our regulars – from Tex to the back end of the bullpen – were great too. And the best part? We won a series heading into what will be a tough one against the Tigers. I am not looking forward to facing this guy tomorrow night.

 

Share

Those Evil Home Runs Are Pretty Great

Monday, July 16th, 2012

I don’t know where the Yankees would be without the long ball, but I don’t care. Tonight was the perfect example of how much fun they are. Russell Martin’s put the Yanks on the board and Raul Ibanez’s sealed the deal, and it all had a happy ending.

Of course I have to take some credit for the Ibanez slam. The score was tied and I was getting antsy. Luckily, we had driven to the Bridgewater Market here in CT and bought one of their amazing blueberry pies earlier in the day, so I had some rally pie around 9 o’clock.

And yes, there was vanilla ice cream involved.

Anyhow, I finished my slice of pie and sat there with my purple teeth and Ibanez went deep. Mission accomplished.

Big game for Phil Hughes tonight. He pitched well and gave us innings. And Soriano continues to get the job done, although he might need to rest the arm at the rate he’s going.

Speaking of arms, what to make of the Brett Gardner situation. The guy doesn’t get better and keeps going for MRIs and consultations with doctors. What’s to find out at this point? He tries to play and feels pain. End of story. Get the damn surgery already and let Cashman trade for Victorino, Upton or whichever outfielder he’s targeting. I’d be sad if Betances were included in the package though. I guess we’ll know soon enough.

Share

What A Cliffhanger!

Saturday, June 23rd, 2012

My God, that game was nerve wracking. I was blacked out by FOX as usual, so I listened to John and Suzyn, who made things even more tense. John kept saying, “It is high, it is far, it is….caught” whenever the Yankees would go long but not long enough, and then he’d say, “It’s a fly ball deep to…it’s gone” whenever we did go long enough. It made me nuts.

It looked like Nova wouldn’t get any run support at all – I’m sorry but the RISP thing is a problem, no matter what Girardi says – until Ibanez came to our rescue and Chavez put us ahead. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: we have a fabulous bench this year.

Errors by Jeter and A-Rod? What was that about?

I honestly don’t know if I can take a full season of Robertson’s Houdini shtick. He either walks people or strikes them out, and he needs to stop it.

Nice job by Rapada, Logan and Soriano to hold the Mets down and help break the losing streak. I feel a lot better about heading into tomorrow night against Dickey. At least we won’t get swept.

Share

So Much For The King

Friday, May 11th, 2012

If you’d told me that Kuroda would outduel Hernandez, I might have raised an eyebrow. But it happened. After what seemed like an endless 1-1 tie, the Yankees broke through and dethroned the King, thanks to Ibanez’s latest blast, speaking of surprises. I was down on Raul’s signing in the beginning of the season, but he’s making me a believer.

Cano is on a total roll now – both at the plate and in the field. It’s like someone waved a magic wand over him and turned him back into the superstar we know he is.

The bullpen was great too, right down the line.

But the star of the night was Kuroda. No, the Mariners aren’t much on offense. And Kuroda does seem to have first inning problems. But he was pitching to major league hitters and he shut them down – the definition of a good outing.

I went out for dinner with Dodger fan friends after the game and was happy to tell them that their former battery mates, Kuroda and Martin, would have made them proud.

Share

Houdini Gets The Save

Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t yell at the TV in the top of the ninth: “I don’t want Robertson! I want Mo!” But I sat back and hoped D-Rob would earn his new job – and he did. Still, if he’s planning to load the bases every time he pitches, it’s going to be a very long season.

Soriano scares me even more. That wild pitch could have been tragic, allowing the Rays to inch closer. But he was victimized by some questionable ball/strike calls, if you ask me. (Does anybody else find Jim Joyce’s loud voice incredibly annoying?)

Big night for Ibanez with the two homers, and I never thought I’d be saying that.

And – wait for it – Nunez didn’t make an error in left field. Joy!

Nova pitched as if he had visions of Pettitte swiping his spot in the rotation. Well, maybe not, but he was really good, whatever his motivation.

Not to place too much emphasis on one win, but I think tonight was an important one. Notching Game 1 of any series is significant, but doing it against Shields and the red-hot Rays was especially nice.

Share

A Laugher!

Sunday, April 15th, 2012

Okay, it wasn’t really a laugher. I was just dying to use the laughing lady again. But whenever the Yankees score 10 runs or more, I do get excited.

Anyhow, Nova was great at limiting damage. Yes, he gave up some runs, but he always seemed in command.

Loved the expression on Torii Hunter’s face when Ibanez’s homer sailed over his head. He was standing there going, “Whaaaaat was that?”

Loved the offense from the middle of the order – particularly their ability to move runners over. Yay, RISP.

Loved the continued hot bat of Jeter.

Loved the fact that Cano and Tex each stole a base.

Loved the way Robertson put out the fire Soriano started. But I have no idea why Girardi brought him back out for the eighth with a nice lead. Shouldn’t he have been saved for the rest of the week?

I even loved (okay, liked) the ESPN guys. They had such complimentary things to say about the Yankees for a change.

The icing on tonight’s cake was the item on Boston.com about Bobby Valentine and Kevin Youkilis. Apparently, Bobby was on the radio, speaking out of school, so to speak. Uh-oh.

Valentine: Youkilis not as much into the game

Posted by Peter Abraham, Globe Staff April 15, 2012 10:24 PM

By Peter Abraham, Globe Staff

This is sure to cause some issues.

Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine was on WHDH’s Sports Xtra show Sunday night and said this about Kevin Youkilis:

“I don’t think he’s as physically or emotionally into the game as he has been in the past for some reason. But [on Saturday] it seemed, you know, he’s seeing the ball well, got those two walks, got his on-base percentage up higher than his batting average, which is always a good thing, and he’ll move on from there.”

Youkilis is hitting .200/.265/.233 in the eight games he has played. But the remark seems curiously timed given that he is 6 of 18 with three walks in his last five games.

Youkilis was hampered by injuries in 2010 and 2011. But when he was healthy in 2010, he posted a career-best .975 OPS.

Youkilis, who turned 33 in March, is engaged to marry Julie Brady, the sister of Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.

Share