Thursday, September 29, 2011

At Least the Sox aren’t Gutless Wimps

The Yankees had a choice to make. They could try their best to hold a 7-run lead in the eighth inning and possibly face the Red Sox, or they could blow the lead and increase their chances of facing the Rays. They chose to avoid the Red Sox. Contrast that with the Phillies. The classy team still had Rollins, Utley, and Pence in the game to ignite an extra innings rally. They only took Ryan Howard out for a pinch runner late in the game, just like any of the other 161 games they played. It’s amazing that an organization that everyone claims is so professional would duck and cover like that.

Were the Red Sox eliminated because the Yankees are cowards? Not entirely. They certainly could have taken care of things on their own. All they had to do was win two more games than they did this year, and it wouldn’t have mattered whether or not Girardi can look at himself in a mirror. Frankly, just one more win against the Rays would have done it.

There will be several more posts coming trying to determine just what went wrong. (At the moment, I’m pegging season-ending injuries to the #3 and #5 starters, and clean-up hitter.) But, I’m tired today. Not just because the ridiculous games didn’t decide to end until midnight. I’m tired from an entire season of negativity. Since day one I’ve had to fight people who needed this team to be horrible. They can’t recover from an opening series sweep! They can’t take two of their last three games! They should have known they’d need eight starters and had all-stars stocked in Pawtucket! It’s exhausting to battle idiocy for so long. Looking back, I realize that I didn’t enjoy this season nearly as much as I should have because it was always such a battle with the EEIdiots. This was a great team, and nobody would let themselves believe it. Well, nobody except the Yankees. The Yankees obviously still feared them.

Go Phillies!


  1. Did the Yankees roll over? or were they just resting the big guys because they only get (OMG!) one day's rest before the post season starts? yeah, whatever.

  2. Yeah - Ryan Madson looked great out on the mound in that save situation - oh wait...

    C'mon seriously - this is sour grapes. They didn't fear them - why would you fear the Red Sox? Their starting pitching is in shambles - not good for a playoff run. On some level, they did just what the phillies did - played their starters and set up their pitching staff. The Phillies didn't pitch Bastardo or Madson in a save situation. The only difference - the Yankees got up 7 runs so they took out their starters. The phillies didn't, so they left them in.

    Why should the Yankees do anything but the best option to set up their postseason chances - they're not scared of the Sox - it just wasn't their problem.

  3. True. The Yanks had every right to rest whomever they liked. They won the division. They earned it. But, in the bottom of the eighth, Joe Girardi looked at the scoreboard. The Sox were winning, and so was he. He could either continue to win, and set up a Sox match-up in the ALCS, or throw the game and face the Rays instead. He decided to allow a 7-run lead evaporate into thin air. No way the Yankees lose that game in August. It was a decision. He picked the Rays. He decided he could beat the Rays in the playoffs. He apparently wasn't so sure about the Sox.

    There's nothing sour about it. I said the Sox missed the playoffs because they didn't win enough games. But, it was plain and simple. Girardi had a choice. He preferred to face the Rays. Wuss.

  4. Stepping in only because the Phillies were mentioned . . . Ryan Madson wasn't on the mound in the 13th because he was used in the 8th to face the heart of the Braves order. Bastardo was unavailable because he had pitched in the last two (or three?) games.

    Charlie Manuel made it clear he didn't want to cheat baseball (or the Cardinals) by letting up off the gas for the Braves series.

    Frankly, as a Phillies fan, I would have much rather faced the Diamondbacks in the first round of the play-offs, rather than a team we went 3-6 against in the regular season. But the Phils did something the Yankees didn't do - they played their last three games to win, even if it meant a tougher opponent in the N.L.D.S.

    At least Girardi isn't as bad as Jose Reyes.

  5. Maybe, just maybe, Girardi was worried about THE ACTUAL TEAM THAT IS GOING TO BEAT HIS YANKEES (not the struggling Boston team). So he did what he thought was best for his team to beat the Tigers - a much more formidable opponent than the Red Sox. The one team in the AL hotter than the Rays? The Tigers. No, he can't be worried about the pitcher who just had the best season in over a decade - could he? No. it must be he's fretting over that Boston team and their September 7+ SP-ERA that he likely wouldn't even play because Texas would literally have pounded their staff into submission.

    And David Stern instructs the refs to be sure that the Lakers, Celtics or Lebron always win right? The fact that you're even writing about what the yankees did means it's sour grapes. The whole idea completely forgets that the Tigers and Rangers. It's this kind of narrow-minded focus that annoys the rest of the country with Sox and Yankee fans - they aren't the only 2 teams that are relevant.

  6. The Sox have lost their way. They pay for the most expensive free agents even when they don't fit with the team. They put together a brutally expensive roster that has little fundamental ability. They need a philosophy change. Until they do, they will win nothing. Francona may be leaving. He is not the issue as much as Theo and management. They need to be SMART again, not just be Richie Rich.

  7. I agree with you lifetime. The Yanks were not concerned with the Sox in any way. They had just pounded them into submission. The Yanks were setting up for the next series and they were not going to waiver off of that plan. They earned the right to do what they needed to do to prepare for the post season early and set their team up.

    Only Sox fans are blaming and deflecting to others for their teams colossally horrible September (one of the 5 worst in Sox history) They were not one of the 8 best teams in baseball, bottom line.

    The injury plee is crud too. I seem to recall Arod/Jeter/Hughes/Joba/Soriano missing tons of time, and you certainly are not going to say that the $40 million Rays didn't have a disadvantage. Texas was without Hamilton/Cruz/Beltre and Detroit had their fair share of injuries.
    A team with a $180 million payroll should be able to absorb and adjust. They are not the best team if they can't...period.

    I would have loved to see the Yanks Tee off on a team with a staff ERA of 7.

  8. Jim, thanks for the clarification.

    If the Sox were so pathetic, why wouldn't the Yankees just beat the Rays so they would make the playoffs? It would eliminate one team from the real competition. Why not throw Rivera? That way the Sox are in, and it's one less team to worry about. Rivera had thursday off anyway. And, if Verlander is as amazing as lifetime implies, he won't pitch Friday either. How much rest does he need?

    The Sox didn't miss the playoffs because of the Yankees. They should have let it come down to that. But, in the bottom of the eighth, and bottom of the ninth of his game, Girardi could have selected the fourth team to enter the playoffs. He selected the Rays.

    As for the injuries, losing two starters is not something you absob and adjust, especially when one is a Cy Young candidate. You don't just pull another one of those off the farm. If Buchholz is healthy, the Sox are in the playoffs.

  9. Freddy from the BronxSeptember 30, 2011 at 2:23 PM

    the idea is to never see the red sox make the playoffs and advance. that was accomplished. wow, could you imagine if your expensive outfielder carl crawford actually caught that baseball? it may have been a different ballgame. believe me, no one fears the mighty red sox...because they are anything but.
    nice try

  10. Yes, it would have been nice if Crawford had caught the ball. But, that was after Girardi's decision.

    You can say nobody fears the Red Sox. That's fine. If you don't fear them, though, wouldn't you want them in the playoffs? Wouldn't you decide to hold the lead? Girardi made the opposite decision. He chose the Rays.

  11. Freddy from the BronxSeptember 30, 2011 at 3:01 PM

    girardi managed that game poorly, 7-0, they thought they would win it. at the end, there was no one else to turn to. i get that.

    again, you never want the red sox in the playoffs ever because they're the red sox


What people are reading this week