Ace CC Sabathia would be on the mound, the Yankee bats have been hot and the bullpen had been lights out.
Sabathia kept up his end of the deal, by the end of the seventh he had held the Twins scoreless, retiring the last 17 batters he faced and posted six strikeouts.
Every frozen fan at the game, like myself was hoping that Sabathia would be back to start the eighth inning but we knew better and gave CC a well deserved standing ovation as he walked to the dugout.
Hey stranger things have happened, but not when your manager is Joe Girardi and the fact that Sabathia’s pitch count was at 104.
Without even having to glance into the bullpen to confirm what I already knew, Rafael Soriano jogged out and got on the bump after throwing 19 pitched the night before in the Yankee win.
Soriano walked three batters, but managed to get two outs but in the process handed the Twins their first run scored of the night. Girardi’s new pitching coach Larry Rothschild had already made the call to the bullpen to get Soriano off the mound.
This is where I questioned Girardi’s tactics. Soriano was clearly off, but the umpire calls were also questionable. With two out already, I would have left Soriano in, just for the mere reason that I trust him more than Dave Robertson or Boone Logan.
I get that his pitch count was at 32 but one more batter wouldn’t have killed Soriano. Even knowing that most pitches Soriano threw in a game last year was 33, with Delman Young coming to the plate with the bases loaded an exception could have been made.
I however do not disagree with Girardi pulling Sabathia after the seventh inning.
Sabathia is the Yankees most precious cargo and there are still 157 games left to play. The risk is even worth losing a game like the team did tonight because I can promise you that Yankees Universe is sleeping a lot better knowing that their ace is still perfect.
In the post game MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch quoted Sabathia agreeing with his skipper:
“I know [manager] Joe [Girardi] and how he is,” Sabathia said. “It’s early in the season, and he’s trying to protect us. I kind of had a feeling that was my last inning.”
Well, now it is official that the only thing New York hot Tuesday night were the Mets, and of course the Amazins’ were not even home. Typical.
As for Wednesday night, the votes are in and the motto for the Yankees is avenge and revenge, as their good-old buddy the American Idol, Carl Pavano will be pitching.
Pavano has been on the mound at Yankee Stadium more as a Twin making less money, than he did in the pinstripes that made him rich. What a perfect time to make Pavano payback and get another win.
“Most ball games are lost, not won.” - Casey Stengel
- Soriano, Yankees ‘pen wastes gem by Sabathia (boston.com)
- Andruw homers in first at-bat with Yanks (mlb.mlb.com)
- Feliciano Stung by Mets Pitching Coach’s Comments (nytimes.com)
- Twins overcome Sabathia’s gem, top Yanks in 10 (sportsillustrated.cnn.com)
- Twins Break Through In The Bronx, Rally Past The Yankees (newyork.cbslocal.com)
- Yankees continue dominance of Twins (nypost.com)