The Yanks lost 2 of 3 to the Rays this weekend, and barely won the one game they did manage to take to keep the division lead. It was definitely not pretty. Both on and off the field there was plenty to talk about this weekend. Here are the major talking points:
- Surprisingly enough, it was the bullpen that was the lone strong point for the Yankees over the weekend. Joba was excellent in 2 innings of work on Friday, D-Rob continued to dominate and Boone Logan was more than efficient in his work on Saturday, Mo was Mo (that's really the only thing I can ever say about him), and Kerry Wood looked pretty good in his debut today. The starting pitching was meh, and the offense was pathetic. Were it not for the bullpen, there's a good chance the Yanks lose all 3 games and lost them by more than they did.
- Outside of Crawford, Upton, and Pena, there isn't much in the Tampa lineup that makes you take a second look, but these guys can hit. They all work the pitch count, they all fight off pitches, and they can all make you pay for mistakes. Matt Joyce did it to Hughes on Friday night and Javy Saturday, and the whole lineup seemed to have CC's number today, taking the shit that he threw for walks and pounding the mistakes he did make in the zone. Not a lot of guys filling up the stat sheet, but not an easy out in the bunch.
- Outside of Swish and Cano, there wasn't much coming from the Yankee lineup at all. Jeter still hasn't caught fire like we're all waiting for him to do, Teix was slowed down this series, as was C-Grand, and The Horse is really starting to feel the pressure of not hitting his 600th dinger yet. Nowhere was that more apparent than Saturday, when he got a few pitches to drive and couldn't do anything with them. Add his strikeout looking as a pinch hitter today and it's clear that he's pressing at the plate: too much swinging for the fences and too much looking for just the right pitch.
- And shame on Joe for pinch hitting A-Rod in that situation in the first place today. If you say you're giving the guy a day off then give him the fucking day off. It's obvious he's pressing way too hard right now at the plate, so why put him up there in a situation where it's obvious you want him swinging for the fences. The smart move would have been to keep him on the bench all game, let him get his head clear for a day, and get after it tomorrow. Now after that K today, I'd be shocked if A-Rod got on base tomorrow let alone hit a home run.
- Jorge Posada is officially old as fuck. He was a part of 2 plays on Friday night that, if any other guy was running, could have been infield singles. Instead Carlos Pena had enough time to make recoveries, dust off his uniform, read a few chapters of "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo," check his email on his iPhone, and throw to first to get Jorge by multiple steps each time. I commented on the logjam that Berkman's presence could cause at DH and after this weekend it's clear that DH is where Jorge's future is and should be, not behind the plate.
- Speaking of Fat Elvis, not exactly a dynamite debut this weekend. 1-8 with a potential rally-killing GIDP in the 8th and a couple of missed plays in the field today that Teix probably makes. I still say he will be a good addition to the lineup when all is said and done, but he certainly didn't do himself any favors in the "keeping the NY media off your back" department.
- At last some good news via LoHud. Andy threw off a half mound today without any pain and could miss only 2 more starts. Dustin Moseley filled in admirably in his last outing, but with CC's recent struggles with command, Phil Hughes' innings limit, and A.J. being A.J., getting Andy back to full strength and back in the rotation as soon as possible is great news.
- And some even better news via RAB. Chan Home Run Park was DFA'd to make room for Kerry Wood. Yankee fans everywhere had this to say:
So at least there's some good news to come out of this weekend.
Update: Tanaka Throws 35 Pitch Batting Practice
48 minutes ago