(Sad Raul is sad. Courtesy of The AP)
It was a frustrating game last night. The Yankees got great starting pitching from Hiroki Kuroda but couldn't do much against an inconsistent Felix Doubront. They were able to muster up a little late-game offense to tie it up and force extra innings, but that ended up being nothing more than a moral victory after they lost the lead and the game in the 10th. If you're interested in my thoughts on the game as it unfolded, check out last night's live blog.
- Need proof that Kuroda got jobbed last night? Of the 24 outs he recorded, 15 of them were on the ground and only 2 left the infield. 2 of the 7 hits he allowed were groundballs that found holes, and 1 was a line drive right at Derek Jeter that Jeter probably should have caught.
- Kuroda was very good last night. He once again had his slider working to perfection to right-handers, and although he couldn't get the downward break on his splitter that he had the previous 2 starts, he made up for it by having a solid sinker and a lively 4-seamer.
- Doubront had really good stuff last night, and he should get credit for that. 15 swinging strikes out of 64 (23.44%) is nothing to sneeze at. But he also battled inconsistency with his fastball, and left more than a few hittable pitches over the plate. The Yankee offense just didn't do much with them.
- The 1-4 hitters for the Yanks last night (Jeter, C-Grand, Teix, Cano) were a combined 1-19 with 1 BB, 6 K, and 6 LOB. That's just not going to get it done against any pitcher, whether he's commanding his stuff or not.
- Of course Russell Martin showed up on a night where nobody else did. As I told my buddy Gary last night via text, Martin has one of these games every 12-15, so we probably shouldn't expect to hear much from him offensively until about the second week of August.
- Kuroda: 8 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 4 K. Kuroda is slowly bypassing CC as the stopper of the staff, and he's been the staff's best starter for about 2 months now. After getting some solid run support in 2 ineffective outings earlier in the month, Kuroda was probably due for a night like last night where he didn't get much, but it's still frustrating.
- Martin: 2-2, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI, 2 BB. When Russell Martin and his sub-.675 OPS are the only real source of offense, that's almost always going to end in a Yankee loss.
- Mark Teixeira: 0-5, 1 K, 3 LOB. Teix was almost the hero on Saturday but was one of the lead villains last night. His first-pitch swinging groundout to end the 7th with Ichiro on 3rd was awful, and he only saw 16 pitches on the night in 5 PA.
- Robinson Cano: 0-5, 1 K. Same story as Teix. Only 16 pitches seen in 5 PA. I know Cano is a free-swinger, but what's the rush, guys? Cano's in a bit of a mini-slump right now, hitting .250 with just 1 RBI and 1 BB in his last 10 games.
The Yankees get a chance to gain back some of the division lead they've lost over the past couple weeks with a 3-game series against the Orioles. Baltimore isn't exactly playing great baseball right now either and they'll send rookie right-hander Miguel Gonzalez to the mound tonight to face Freddy Garcia.