Tagged: Lance Cormier

Yanks Honor Steinbrenner, Sheppard With Walk-Off Win



The New York Yankees paid tribute to their longtme public address announcer Bob Sheppard and their iconic owner of 37 years George Steinbrenner on Friday night.
The somber Yankee Stadium ceremony with roses, videos and speeches then gave way to a game that echoed a game played 31 years ago after Thurman Munson had died.
The Yankees, who never led the game until the end, received a game-tying solo home run from Nick Swisher in the eighth inning. Then Swisher won the game in walk-off fashion in the ninth inning with a single to right to score Curtis Granderson from second as the Yankees honored two legendary greats with a 5-4 victory over the second-place Tampa Bay Rays.
Much like Friday, the game on Aug. 6, 1979 against the Baltimore Orioles the score ended up 5-4 on a two-run single by Bobby Murcer, who also homered earlier in that game.
Swisher, like his other Yankee teammates, stepped to the plate with two out and two on in the ninth inning sporting a simple GMS patch for Steinbrenner over the interlocking NY over his heart and a microphone patch on his left sleeve to honor Bob Sheppard. 
Granderson had led off the ninth with a single to right off Rays reliever Randy Choate and he advanced to second on pinch-hitter Ramiro Pena’s sacrifice bunt. Choate walked Brett Gardner and Rays manager replaced Choate with Dan Wheeler.
Wheeler struck out Derek Jeter and Maddon then replaced Wheeler with right-hander Lance Cormier. Swisher worked the count to 2-1 before lacing a single to right. Right-fielder Gabe Kapler’s throw home actually beat Granderson but the ball skipped past catcher Kelly Shoppach and Granderson slid into home with the winning run, much to the delight of the 47,524 fans in attendance.
Mariano Rivera (3-1) pitched a scoreless ninth to pick up the win.
The victory extended the Yankees’ lead on the Rays to three games in the American League East. The Red Sox, by virtue of their second straight loss to the Texas Rangers, fell 6 1/2 games back.

  • Swisher’s night was magical. He singled to drive in the Yankees’ first run in the third inning. His 16th home run of the season in the eighth inning off Joaquin Benoit tied the game 4-4 and then his game-winner capped off a 3-for-5 night with three RBIs. Swisher raised his average to .303 on the season.
  • Robinson Cano brought the Yankees to within one run in the sixth inning with a solo home run off Rays starter James Shields for his 17th home run of the season. 
  • Jorge Posada followed Cano with a solo shot of his own to tie the score at 3-3. It was the 10th home run of the season for Posada and his first since June 16 against the Philadelphia Phillies.
  • David Robertson started his second half off with a bang. He came on in the eighth inning and faced three batters and struck out all three. Robertson entered the second half with a 5.46 ERA but he has had 19 scoreless outings in his last 22 appearances dating back to May 7 when his ERA was 13.50.

  • This was not a good night for CC Sabathia. Struggling most of the night with command of his fastball, Sabathia gave up eights hits and four walks in seven innings. But he did limit the damage to four runs (three earned) and the Rays scored only two runs off Sabathia when they loaded the bases with no outs in both the fifth and seventh innings.
  • It was an emotional night for Jeter, who delivered a moving speech about Sheppard and Steinbrenner before the game. It showed at the plate, too. Jeter was 0-for-5 and his slump in July continues. He is hitting .178 for the month and his season average fell to .270. That is the lowest his average has been since May 22.
  • Swisher had a great night at the plate but in the field it was not so stellar. He overran and then dropped a fly ball off the bat of Kelly Shoppach for a two-base error to begin the sixth inning.  He also threw a ball badly off-line attempting to nail B.J. Upton taking third on a single by Carl Crawford in the seventh inning.

The Yankees recalled first baseman/DH Juan Miranda from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Friday and optioned infielder Kevin Russo back to Scranton. Miranda was the DH in Friday’s game and was 0-for-3.  This is Miranda’s second promotion to the club. In18 games, Miranda hit .217 with two home runs and seven RBIs. Russo hit .188 with four RBIs in 29 games with the Yankees.  

The Yankees will have another emotional day on Saturday as they conduct their annual Old-Timers Day at the stadium.
They will go for the series win of the three-game weekend series with A.J. Burnett (7-7, 4.75 E
RA) on the mound. Burnett is coming off two starts in which he is 1-0 with a 1.32 ERA after suffering through a winless June. In his only start against the Rays this season he lost on May 19, giving up six runs in 6 2/3 innings. In his career against the Rays Burnett is 12-5 with a 2.98 ERA.
Burnett will be opposed by fellow right-hander Jeff Niemann (7-2, 2.77 ERA). Niemann is 1-0 with a 3.06 ERA in his last three starts. He is 1-0 with a 2.93 ERA against the Yankees. He has not faced the Yankees this season.
Game-time will be 4:10 p.m. EDT and the game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports.

Yankees Wait For Rays To Lower Their Shields


The Yankees played their version of “rope-a-dope” to get the pitch count up on Rays’ ace James Shields and it worked to perfection.
Jorge Posada blasted a two-run home run with one out in the sixth inning off reliever Randy Choate, who had just entered the game after Shields had thrown 103 pitches, as the New York Yankees took a 3-2 lead and went on to thump the Rays 7-3 on Sunday.
A.J. Burnett (1-0) pitched more economically than Shields and he lasted seven innings to pick up his first victory of the season. Choate (0-1) took the loss.
With the victory, the Yankees won the series and ran their record to 4-2. The Rays fell to 3-3.

  • Burnett showed Shields the value of keeping the pitch count down. He threw 92 pitches and gave up only two runs on six hits and three walks in seven innings. Shields had a 2-1 lead but had to be removed with one on and one out in the sixth inning after throwing 103 pitches.
  • Once again, the Yankees feasted on a largely deficient Rays’ bullpen. Choate, Lance Cormier and Andy Sonnanstine pitched 3 2/3 innings and served up five runs on five hits and one walk. 
  • Alex Rodriguez contributed to the attack with two doubles and two RBIs.
  • Curtis Granderson had a very good all-around game, He was 2-for-4 with an RBI single in the second to score Rodriguez with the Yankees first run. He also singled off the left-hander Choate, stole second, move to third on a groundout and scored on a wild pitch from Cormier to make it 4-2. Granderson also made a fine sliding catch on a sinking liner in the fifth by Dioner Navarro and doubled off Pat Burrell at first base.
  • Nick Swisher connected on his second home run of the season in the eighth inning off Sonnanstine.
  • Mark Teixeira may have struck out all three times he faced Shields but he made the veteran right-hander pay for it. Teixeira forced Shields to throw 18 pitches in his three at-bats.

  • After Teixeira broke out of his 0-for-17 slide on Saturday he was 0-for-4, with a walk and a run scored. Of his three strikeouts, two times he was caught looking.
  • Brett Gardner was 0-for-4 and he failed to get a ball out of the infield.
  • Burnett got off to a rocky start by allowing a Jason Bartlett single, a stolen base, an RBI single by Carl Crawford, a stolen base, a walk and an RBI groundout to Carlos Pena. But after that Burnett gave up only four hits and two walks over the next six innings.
  • Joba Chamberlain relieved Burnett in the seventh and immediately made things a bit too interesting for the Rays by giving up a single, an RB
    I triple and a walk. But he got out of the inning by getting B.J Upton to fly out to left with two runners on and the Yankees held their 7-3 lead.
  • Mariano Rivera pitched the ninth in a non-save situation and gave up a leadoff single and later walked the No. 9 hitter Sean Rodriguez. But he benefitted from a doube play and struck out Jason Bartlett to end the game.
  • In defense of Chamberlain and Rivera, not many pitchers in the bullpen have been getting much work because the Yankees had two off-days last week and CC Sabathia pitched into the eighth inning and Burnett threw seven on Sunday. It is hard to stay sharp when you are not getting regular work.

If there was any doubt that Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg is the worst baseball facility in existence, the bottom of the sixth inning proved it. With one on and two out, Evan Longoria hit a harmless pop-up straight up behind home plate, it struck the “B Level” catwalk and landed in fair territory. By ground rule, Longoria was awarded a single. Burnett, a bit unnerved by the call, walked Pena to load the bases. But he escaped without giving up a run when B.J. Upton popped up to Teixeira without hitting any catwalks to end the threat.  . . .  Second base umpire James Hoye blew a call in the seventh inning when Curtis Granderson appeared to have caught Dioner Navarro’s fly ball on a diving catch. Hoye ruled Granderson trapped it but replays showed the ball hit in Granderson’s glove pocket and never touched the ground. No harm though. Burnett ended the inning by getting Rodriguez to bounce into a double play.  . . .   The Yankees completed their spring training schedule and first road trip of the season. They will fly back tonight to New York, the first time they have been in the city as a team since they won the World Series and their parade.  . . .  The Yankees will host a charity Welcome Home Luncheon tomorrow at noon.  . . .  The team will also have a huge Opening Day celebration planned for Tuesday. The Yankees will receive their World Series rings before the game.

The Yankees will celebrate their 2010 world championship by receiving their World Series on Tuesday before the game. They will receive them in front of the team they beat to advance to the World Series: the Los Angeles Angels. Hideki Matsui, who was the World Series MVP for the Yankees, will receive his ring in an Angels’ uniform. 
Andy Pettitte (0-0), who pitched the clinching Game 6 of the World Series, appropriately will get the start for the Yankees. He will be opposed by Angels right-hander Ervin Santana (0-1).
Game-time is scheduled for 1:05 p.m. EDT and the game will be telecast locally by the YES Network and nationally by the MLB Network.