The game finished just shy of five hours and into early Wednesday morning, so here is a quick list of seven things I took away from the longest game played so far in 2011.
- Yankees Bartolo Colon threw a classic game, going eight full innings and throwing an efficient 87 pitches in total. Without question this was Colon’s best start as a Yankee. I am the first to admit that I never expected much from Colon, nothing even close to a 3.16 ERA, in just over 51 innings pitched, with 48 strikeouts, in his six starts for New York.
- Alex Rodriguez is hitting going four for seven against the Orioles, and the night before in Tampa he hit two bombs in the game. Both games the team won, snapping a 0-6 losing streak and once again proving how vital A-rod’s performance is to the team as a whole.
- Skipper Joe Girardi pulled Colon after eight with a 1-0 lead, only to have the rare occurrence of Mariano Rivera giving up the tying run; which in essence extended the game an extra six innings. Girardi has been under the gun lately and if the team hadn’t won was about to face major adversity again. Someone has to be the bad guy, but Girardi is not a terrible manager and it’s time for Yankee fans to stop pouncing all over him. Girardi is a good man and trying his best and that is all you can ask for from any manager.
- After Rivera’s 19-pitch outing, the Yankees bullpen arms of Luis Ayala, Boone Logan and Hector Noesi (major league debut) threw six scoreless innings and kept the Orioles at bay.
- After being called up 16 days prior, the 24-year old Noesi’s finally made his Yankees debut in the 12th inning. Even though the situation of Noesi taking the bump was out of desperation, the rookie showed his true colors and earned the respect of his new teammates. Noesi threw four scoreless innings and got the win.
- I did have a minor heart attack in the 15th inning when Orioles pitcher Mike Gonzalez threw a 93 mph fastball that hit the head of Chris Dickerson. Dickerson fell to the ground and was down for about five minutes surrounded by Girardi, bench coach Tony Pena and trainer Gene Monahan. It was a scary moment, but Dickerson got up on his own and handed off his cracked helmet to reveal a welt on the side of his left eye. Girardi pulled him out and Mark Craig from The Star-Ledger reports that Dickerson was taken to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Let’s just pray Dickerson is alright.
- The biggest difference I noticed missing form the 2011 Yankees was their fight to win. After watching this 15-inning battle I finally saw it again. Considering I was home on my couch and started getting worn out after the 11th inning. It makes me realize how hard they fought to win.
Thursday night Yankees ace CC Sabathia will take the bump. Sabathia will be looking to lead his team to their third win in a row, as well as pitching deep into the game considering how shredded the Yankees bullpen will be.
Orioles skipper Buck Schowalter burned through nine pitchers and in the end had to use his starter for Thursday night’s game Jeremy Gunthrie. No word yet from the Orioles on whether Gunthrie will go or not, everyone is exhausted so probably won’t know to closer to game time.
Overall, long night but good things are starting to happen for New York and hopefully it will continue.