A Game for the Ages

A-Rods clutch homer in the 11th keeps the game alive.

Hairston 10:17.jpgIt’s not to surprising that the Yankees have continued their walk off magic into the postseason. Leading the major leagues with both 51 comeback wins and 15 walk offs in the regular season, the Yankees lead in both those categories in the postseason. Last night (and this morning) marked the Yankees second walk off win and their fourth comeback win this postseason. Just a week away from the thriller game 2 of the ALDS, the Yankees put on another show in the Bronx.

Burnett for the Yankees and Saunders for the Angels both took the mound to start the game. Both pitched very well, each giving up just two runs and going more than 6 innings. Burnett was a bit sloppy though, giving up one of his runs on a wild pitch.
Burnett wasn’t the only sloppy one. The Yankees had 3 errors and the Angels had two. They combined for 4 double plays and 28 men left on base. With those kind of numbers, it is no surprise the game went 13 innings.
The bullpens were the silver lining in this one. The Yankees finished the game with just one reliever left, Chad Gaudin. They used 7 relievers who combined for 6.2 innings pitched. Together they allowed just 1 run and struck out 6 batters. Robertson, the final pitcher, recorded the win.
The Angels somehow managed to use just 4 relievers. They, to, pitched very well. They combined for 5.1 innings and gave up 2 runs and struck out just three batters. Ervin Santana got the loss.
The Yankee bullpen probably came out on top in this one. Especially because of probably the biggest point in the game. The Angels, after taking the lead in the 11th inning, brought in their closer Brian Fuentes. The due up batters were A-Rod, Guzman and Gardner. Guess what? Down 0-2, A-Rod lifted a shot right over the right field wall to tie the game. A-Rod now has 6 straight postseason games with an RBI, dating back to 2007 against the Indians. That is the longest streak in his career by a long shot.
From then on, it was sloppy. Each team had opportunities in each inning but couldn’t cash in. The player who could probably take the most blame is Guerrero who came up with bases loaded, 2 outs twice and struck out both times. It was clear, to me at least, that one of these teams was going to win on a gift, because neither team was acting like they really wanted it.
That was the way it turned out. Hairtson scored in the bottom of the 12th on a throwing error by Izturis at second to win the game.
“Izzy just tried to do to much,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. “Your not going to turn two there.”
The game took 13 innings and 5 hours and 10 minutes. It was the second longest by innings and the fourth longest by time in ALCS history. Hopefully, for the sake of our health, the Yankees never break that record.
Player of the Game: Alex Rodriguez: 1 for 6, HR, RBI
The Wrap-Up: This was going to be a big game either way it turned out. If the Angels could go back to Anaheim tied 1-1 in a place where the Yankees are horrible, this series would pretty much be in their hands. Instead, the Yankees have full control. But, don’t forge what happened in 2004. No lead is a sure lead. The Yankees know that more than anyone.
Coming Up Next: We go to southern cal. where weather will surely no longer be the problem. It will be Pettitte vs Weaver. I haven’t seen the forecast, but I’d bet $1,000 it will be 70-80 degrees, sunny and low humidity on Monday. Typical southern cali day.

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