Games » New York YankeesJul25
Sean O’Sullivan. So the Royals now have a pitcher whose initials are S.O.S.? Despite what seems like a bad omen and a less-than-awesome outing, there WERE things to like here. O’Sullivan threw strikes. Five innings without a walk, even after he gave up a couple home runs.
On the flip side: Like just about everyone else in the universe, Sean has to pitch ahead. He gave up two Curtis Granderson home runs after falling behind 3-1 and 2-1. Put a quality hitter in a count where he’s got a pretty good idea of what’s coming and something bad is going to happen…and it did.
Wood is struggling. (See? It’s just that kind of detailed baseball analysis that makes this web site worthwhile.) I’m not real sure why he’s struggling, but there are a few obvious things to look at:
*Hitters are adjusting; he’s not the new kid on the block anymore and teams have come up with a plan of attack. Remember Bob Hamelin? He tore the league up for awhile, the league adjusted and he was done. *Wood’s location seems off. Tom Seaver once said when he works with kids, the first thing he does is get them to throw strikes. The second thing he does is get them to throw low strikes. The third thing he does is leave them alone. If they’re throwing low strikes, they’re going to be OK. Blake Wood WAS throwing a lot of low strikes, now, not so much. *Velocity, maybe. Wasn’t he in the upper 90s on occasion? Or is my memory playing tricks on me? In this game he started in the low 90s and was in the mid-90s by the time he hit A-Rod. Maybe I’m just wishing he was in the upper 90s when he hit A-Rod. (C’mon, any ballplayer who has TWO paintings of himself as a centaur…one wasn’t enough?…deserves a little rain on his parade.)
You guys are killing me…
I say Rick Ankiel has a hole in his swing and he hits an absolute monster shot off the facing of the third deck. To be fair (to me), I did say he’s making a living off balls left out over the plate and this was left out over the plate…briefly.
I defend Yuniesky Betancourt’s defense and he blows a double play by rushing when he doesn’t have to. One of the raps on Yuniesky is that he doesn’t pay attention to who’s running and what it means. Nick Swisher was running, and I thought they timed him with a desk calendar.
Jason Kendall threw one just about sideways to allow a base stealer to get up and continue on to third, Mike Aviles didn’t get in front of a short hop that ate him up (the umpire did get in the way) and Chris Getz buried a throw.
Yost and the bench…
Not sure if this is a pattern yet, but Ned seems to use the bench to spell players more than as late-inning replacements. I’m not a big fan of moving a lot of players around to different positions. That’s what a utility player is for. (Willie Bloomquist comes to mind. The guys who CAN shift around have a special skill that not everyone possesses.)
The game’s hard enough and big leaguers are playing it at the highest level. They’re great athletes or they wouldn’t be here, but quick reactions come from years of repetition, and it appeared Getz mistimed looking the runner back at third, then going over to first. He appeared to take too long looking the runner back and then had to rush the throw. If you haven’t done it before, it ain’t easy.
Of course, my attitude might be due to the fact that I’ve never successfully mastered ONE position, much less eight. There was a brief period in which I decided to be a catcher. I called Clint Hurdle and said, “Guess what I’m doing now.”
I gave him a couple of clues: “It involves lots of paraphernalia and it plays to my strengths as a ballplayer.”
He said, “Equipment manager?”
I have extremely honest friends. I’m looking for some who are willing to lie to me.