("Double farts!!" Courtesy of The AP)
Even with the Yankees playing better baseball overall over the past few weeks, their issues with RISP have remained constant. Last night they had an opportunity to sweep a division rival and take the lead in the division, and had ample opportunities to win a game against a shaky David Price with CC Sabathia on the mound. Things just didn't add up the way they should have, and the RISP Fail was front and center again.
- CC came out dealing in the 1st, striking out 2 of the 3 hitters he faced, and it looked like my hunch of a dominant outing was in play, but his fastball command problems that have been a thorn in his side since ST reared their ugly heads again.
- The Rays scored 1 run in the 2nd, 2 in the 3rd, and 2 in the 4th on a combination of singles and doubles off of CC. The 2 in the 2nd were aided by an A-Rod error that would have made it 2 out and nobody on in the inning, but CC couldn't pick his teammate up.
- While this was going on, the Yankees offense was creating plenty of opportunities but cashing in on few. They put 2 on in the bottom of the 1st but got no runs, 3 on in the 2nd and got 1, and loaded the bases with 1 out in the 5th and got none.
- Price was far from sharp, as his command wasn't much better than CC's. He threw 109 pitches in just 5 innings, walked 4 batters, and was done after that. But due to the RISP struggles and CC's fastball struggles, he left with a 5-1 lead.
- CC found it late in the 4th and retired 11 of the next 12 batters he faced through 7, 6 of them via strikeout, but the damage had been done. His stuff was very good again, the slider was devastating, but a handful of bad fastballs did him in. We're closing in on this being a 3-month issue. Time to fix it.
- The offense went silent through the middle innings, but came back a bit late. Raul Ibanez singled in a run in the 8th to make it 5-2, but Clay Rapada and Cory Wade combined to cough up 2 more runs in the top of the 9th to put the game out of reach with an assist from Nick Swisher's error in right.
- Russell Martin hit a garbage time HR in the 9th, his 2nd in 3 games, and was one of the few bright offensive spots as he continued his hot hitting.
- Martin & THE Chris Stewart: Combined 2-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 K. Nice night for the backstops, but when your #9 hitters are the bulk of your offense, that's not a good thing.
- Curtis Granderson: 0-5, 4 K, 4 LOB. If you snuck a peek at the late-night post last night, you already know how I feel about this. Golden Sombreros are never a good thing, and Price had C-Grand's number last night.
- RISP Fail: Combined 1-10, 10 Team LOB. Robinson Cano left a lot of ducks on the pond, as did A-Rod, and the 3-6 spots in the lineup combined for 4 Ks and 0 RBI. We're not out of the woods on this yet, people.
The good news about last night's stinker is that the Yanks can quickly wash the game off and look forward to this weekend's Subway Series. The scrappy, gritty, gutty, and incredibly white and goofy Mets are coming into town! Johan Santana is back on the mound after his