Andy Pettitte is the topic of sports radio today and the concern is the veteran lefty going on short rest. He said he wasn’t going to go out there and try to blow the ball by people, he is just going to approach it as he always does and try to get people out.
Here’s some food for thought Yankees fans. The only Phillies starter to have W’s in this series isn’t pitching tonight. Pettitte is going up against 37-year-old Pedro Martinez. No one is talking about Pedro’s age, Why? Why is Pedro getting a pass here and Andy Pettitte the most winningest pitcher in post season history being underestimated because he is on three days rest?
Some more food for thought, I hope your hungry. This will be just the fifth start for Pettitte in the last month. He has thrown four postseason games in 30 days. That is plenty of rest. That means on average he has had over seven days of rest if you factor in all the off time. You may think I’m crazy or weird, but it’s fact. I know he has only had three days of rest between his last start and this start tonight, but it’s not like Pettitte has been on a regular workload. He has had ample rest. He clinched in Game 6 of the ALCS on October 25th, then didn’t pitch again for six days in the World Series. That’s an extra day of rest and Pettitte wasn’t sharp. He said he didn’t have it, so you can sit here and argue and try to make a radio show on this topic, but I am calling you all out.
By the way, Pedro is 37.
Also as far as the decision to go with the Three Horseman who got the Yankees to the game clincher here tonight, Joe Girardi absolutely made the right decision. Why put Chad Gaudin in to start against Cliff Lee and basically forfeit a Game 5 when you can have A.J. Burnett on the mound? No one knows his players better than the manager. If he didn’t think Burnett didn’t give the Yankees a chance to win Game 5, he wouldn’t have been on the hill.
By the way, Burnett was hitting 95 on the gun. He had problems locating. If you followed this team all year, Burnett had problems locating on regular rest. Why didn’t these guys on sports radio just tell Girardi to have Derek Jeter go up to bat in the top of the first with a white flag tied to the top of his bat?
By the way, Pedro is 37.
One more thing before I punch out. Was Nostradamus a Yankees fan? Check this out:
Quatrain 23? Don Mattingly’s number. What number did Mattingly wear when he began his Yankee career? 46. It ends tonight.
Biff Henderson from the David Letterman show interviewing our own Kenny Singleton and former Yankees General Manager Bob Watson … he also interviewed Joe Buck.
Johnny Damon continues to be my new BFF because whenever we ask this guy for an interview he is, dare I say, Johnny on the spot. Joe Auriemma is busily editing it and it will be up on the site later, as well as my interview with Kenny Singleton.
I asked a lot of beat reporters, radio hosts or just people here working for various media outlets what their gut feeling was for tonight — about 80-85 percent of the people I asked thought this Series was going back to New York for Game Six. This is not exactly a Quinnipiac or New York Times poll, but still a good one.
Brett Gardner starting in center field tonight. Melky is done. Ramiro Pena is now on the roster.
Kenny Singleton’s 1983 Baltimore Orioles were the last team in World Series history to lose Game One and then win the next four. They did it about 300 yards away from where we are sitting right now, at Veterans Stadium.
Four times a team lost Game One and went onto take the next four games.
1983 Orioles (vs. Phillies)
1969 Mets (vs. Orioles)
1942 Cardinals (vs. Yankees)
1915 Red Sox (vs. Phillies)
Will this be the third time the Phillies surrender that fate?
Also interesting to note: the Yankees have been up 3-1 in the World Series eight times. They are 8-0. They have won Game Five six times and Game Six twice.
Year Opponent Game 5 Result
2000 Mets Won 4-2
1977 Dodgers Lost 10-4 (Won Game 6)
1961 Reds Won 13-5
1949 Dodgers Won 10-6
1943 Cardinals Won 2-0
1941 Dodgers Won 3-1
1937 Giants Won 4-2
1936 Giants Lost 5-4 (Won Game 6)
All the leaves are turning brown, but the sky is anything but gray with the Yankees’ postseason run. Just one loss so far, and with one more win tonight out in Anaheim, the Bombers will be back in the Fall Classic for the first time since 2003.
You should all know A.J. Burnett’s story by now. Last year he was in bed with his wife watching postseason baseball wondering what it would be like if it were him pitching in a big game. Tonight, Burnett doesn’t have to wonder. Tonight, Burnett can pitch his team to his second and the teams 40th World Series appearance.
So far in the postseason, with the exception of being a little wild, Burnett has given the Yankees two solid starts. He’s pitched 12.1 innings, allowed a combined three runs on six hits, and the Yanks have won both games by the final of 4-3. As fans you would probably like to watch games without wearing out the leather on the edge of your seat. However, regardless of how they did it, they won both starts and are just one win away from baseball Shangri-la.
Five more wins. Coincidentally for Derek Jeter, Andy Pettitte, Jorge Posada and Mariano Rivera, five more wins equals FIVE GOLDEN RINGS! Calling birds, french hens, turtle doves, and partridges in pear trees sold separately. Christmas is just a little over two months away you know. I couldn’t help myself.
Seven more. Yesterday it was eight. Today, the Yankees magic number is seven. To help us all understand a little better, I put my thinking cap on (dusted it off from first grade) and came up with a math problem for the Yankees post season. I guess it would be algebra. I’m not quite sure. Considering I couldn’t decipher an algebra problem if it jumped off a piece of paper, smacked me in the face, and said, “I’m an algebra problem, solve me!” Maybe if I called on Vanilla Ice during my SATs I would have had a better score. Let’s face it, Robert Van Winkle did tell us all, “If there was a problem, yo, I’ll solve it.” I need to seek help. This I know. Follow this logic though, if I make it up, I can understand it. Here we go:
7 W + 7 OL = 27 WS. I think you can figure it out if I made it up, but for those of you who need me to break it down, seven more wins plus seven more opponents’ losses will equal the Yankees’ 27th World Series title.
Seems like an easy equation, but to get too geeked over one win, especially my rollercoaster fans on Twitter, who live and die with every pitch in the Yankees season. I give you guys all the credit in the world for being the fans you are, but you are certifiable. Case in point, against the Twins, CC Sabathia gave up a leadoff double to Denard Span, and all of my Twitter Chicken Littles thought the sky was falling.
The Angels are better than what we saw last night. They’re not going to go down without a fight. Even if the Yankees take Game 2, the next three games are in LA, or Anaheim, or in LA of Anaheim, I don’t know ask them.
Hopefully Mother Nature cooperates with us and we get this in because we have Giants football tomorrow. We’ve gone from rain, to no rain, to chocolate rain, to rain again. It must be nice to be a forecaster. Nostradamus they are not. Hopefully Nostradamus isn’t Nostradamus. However, I have been looking through quatrains to see if the Yankees will beat the Angels. So far, nothing to report. I’ll let you know.
Update: After reading some of Nostradamus’ Quatrains I found this:
The Royal scepter will be forced to take
that which his predecessors had pledged.
Because they do not understand about the ring
when they come to sack the palace.
Century 7 Quatrain 23
Ring? Sack the Palace? Was Nostradamus a Yankee fan? I know its a stretch, but it’s pretty cool.
Eight wins. Just eight wins stand in the way of the Yankees and their 27th World Series title.
The Bombers won 103 games in the regular season, so eight may not seem like its much. However, the last eight wins will be the hardest eight wins of the season. It will mean the Yankees would have beaten a very good Angels team four times, and either the Dodgers or Phillies another four.
On a side note, speaking of the number eight, if you’re Dick Van Patten, “Eight is Enough.” There I go dating myself again. Eight is also the number Grover used to paint on the blue bald guy’s head on Sesame Street. Why couldn’t the SATs been more about primetime television from the 80’s, and not Geometry and Algebra? A2 + B2 = Chris is going to a college after he gets good grades at a community college because his SATs were awful.
Me and my tangents.
Anyway, a couple interesting facts for you about the Yankees and this series. This regular season, the Bombers were 15-0 when the score was tied at the end of the seventh inning. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that’s the second longest streak in Major League history. Only the 1906 Giants had more wins in a row. They had 16 when the game was tied after the seventh. Why is this important you ask? I think this series will come down to the bullpens. The starting pitching is lights out on both sides, and the Yankees have the edge in the pen. They have the best pen left in the playoffs, hands down. So if the game is close or tied late, Shearn: Chapter 1, Verse 1 of the 2009 ALCS Bible says, “It’s advantage Yankees, boys and girls.”
Another cool stat to keep all of my Twitter followers from committing Chip Caray in the first inning after a lead-off double: The Yankees were a combined 21-14 against the teams in the AL that made the playoffs — 9-9 against the Red Sox (after starting 0-8, by the way), 5-5 against the Angels and 7-0 against the Twins.
If you are an avid reader of, “Off the Wall” or you listen to the “Off the Wall: The Podcast,” you know what I think about things “on paper.” If it’s on paper, it means it’s in the past. You can break down stats all you want. It’s a new season, it’s a new day, and at the end of this series, there will be new heroes to revere.