New York City's like a friendly old ghost, you seem to pass right through
I needed several things to happen last night, and none of them occurred.
- I needed a monsoon to wash over the Bronx, wiping out Wednesday night’s game by, say, 5 p.m.
- I needed a car waiting for me, gassed-up and running, outside Yankee Stadium.
- I needed two items in the glove compartment of said car — a map to Red Bank, N.J., and an envelope filled with $2,000 in cash.
Had all of this actually happened, I could have been in attendance for Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band’s benefit concert at the 1,500-seat Count Basie Theater last night, where the band did the entire Darkness on the Edge of Town and Born to Run albums, in sequence.
Sounds like an amazing night. Wish I could have been there. But I guess my hopes were unrealistic. The car, gas and cash thing was likely, but not the monsoon.
Anyway, it’s the last day in the Bronx. The weather forecast for today’s game looked grim last night, but we’re all right for now. Martinez is out again with that stiff neck (Wedge said Vic really “sucked it up” to play last night), and Travis Hafner is getting two days off in a row as his slump drags on.
INDIANS (16-17): CF Grady Sizemore, 2B Jamey Carroll, DH David Dellucci, SS Jhonny Peralta, LF Ben Francisco, RF Franklin Gutierrez, 1B Ryan Garko, 3B Casey Blake, C Kelly Shoppach. RHP Paul Byrd hurling.
YANKEES (17-18): LF Johnny Damon, SS Derek Jeter, RF Bobby Abreu, DH Hideki Matsui, 1B Jason Giambi, CF Melky Cabrera, 2B Robinson Cano, 3B Wilson Betemit, C Jose Molina. RHP Mike Mussina on the mound.
EXCRUCIATING MINUTIA OF THE DAY…
- Every time Lee completes an outing, the good people at Elias come up with some ridiculous stat about how good his start to the season has been. Here’s today’s: Since the end of World War II, only three pitchers have won their first six starts while posting a lower ERA than Lee’s 0.81 mark. They are Feranando Valenzuela (0.33 in ’81), Roger Clemens (0.73 in ’91) and Pedro Martinez (0.79 in ’97). All three of those pitchers went on to win the Cy Young Award.
- Speaking of the Cy Young, C.C. Sabathia (AL Cy Young, ’07) will oppose the Blue Jays’ Roy Halladay (AL Cy Young, ’03) tomorrow night at Progressive Field. Between the two of them, the pitchers own 215 career wins and seven All-Star appearances.
- The Indians have clinched their first outright season series victory against the Yanks since going 7-6 against them in 1992. The last time the Tribe won a series in Yankee Stadium, as they’ve done here, was June of 2001. Today, the club is going for its first sweep in the Bronx since April of 1989.
- This needs to be said somewhere, so I’m saying it here… Hafner’s GIDP in the ninth inning was the most ridiculous double play I’ve ever seen. For those who didn’t see it, Hafner pinch-hit with the bases loaded. He swung weakly at a curveball, sending it into the dirt in front of home plate. Molina picked up the ball, stepped on home plate and threw to first for the easy DP. The ball didn’t even make it to the infield grass. Wow.
Lastly, a quick anecdote from last night’s postgame. Masa Kobayashi brought out a bottle of celebratory saki to share with his teammates, I guess it was pretty strong stuff. Hafner said it tasted like tequila. Dellucci took one sip, winced and said, “I could put this in my car and get 30 miles to the gallon.”