Today’s game at Wrigley Field was long, frustrating and did I mention long? Thank goodness the Yankees bounced back from yesterday’s loss with a 4-3 victory over the Chicago Cubs.
Let’s talk about the good stuff first
Thanks to a Curtis Granderson tie breaking, sacrifice fly in the top of the sixth, AJ Burnett won his seventh game of the year. Burnett only pitched into the sixth inning but only gave up two runs, four hits, walked three and struck out eight. His only mistake was a fastball that Carlos PeÃ±a deposited into the right fielder bleachers.
And speaking of Carlos PeÃ±a, he tried to score on a shallow fly ball to the left in the bottom of the sixth. Big mistake. Big. Huge. Brett Gardner threw a strike to Russell Martin who blocked the plate and PeÃ±a – who was on third – barreled into Martin who fell to the ground but held onto the ball for the third out. It turned out to be the biggest play in the game. The bases were loaded – after two errors, one by Eduardo NÃºÃ±ez and one by Robinson Cano – and there was only one out. The play at the plate ended Chicago’s scoring threat and it helped Burnett pick up the victory.
And speaking of NÃºÃ±ez, his RBI single in the top of the ninth helped give the Yankees a two run cushion and with Mariano Rivera coming in, it would be a quick, scoreless bottom of the ninth, right? Wrong. Reed Johnson started it off with a solo home run to cut the deficit to one run…
…And speaking of the Reed Johnson home run:
Dear FOX Sports,
Joe Buck is awful. Please get rid of him. Oh and Joe 2 + 1 = 3, not 4. Ugh…
The next batter, former Yankee Alfonso Soriano singled to right center. Thankfully Mo got Giovanny Soto to ground into a double play and then struck Jeff Baker out to end the game. Phew. Crisis averted and Mo picks up save #17 of the season.
Now onto the bad stuff
The Yankees’ offense left thirteen men on base. They had Chicago’s starter Ryan Dempster on the ropes in nearly every single inning and were only able to score two runs. With the way they were getting on base they should have scored at least ten runs. It was pretty frustrating but would have been a lot worse had they ended up losing the game.
The aforementioned errors by NÃºÃ±ez and Cano didn’t lead to any runs but they made things a lot scarier than they needed to be in that bottom half of the sixth inning.
The Yankees just need to play better baseball: Make smarter decisions on the base paths, make clean plays in the field and they need to play like a team that is eleven games over .500.
Tomorrow night’s game is an 8:00PM Sunday Night ESPN game. Get your mute buttons ready!