Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Good Thames, Bad Thames

Good morning Fackers. For the second straight morning we're leading off with a bad pun on Marcus Thames' name. Except this time, it isn't quite as pleasant. And I can't take credit for coming up with this one, as Peter Botte of the Daily News tweeted this right after Thames' critical ninth inning error.

That's a pretty big swing in momentum for Thames in just over a day, going from Monday night's hero to Tuesday night's goat. That's the way it goes. Sometimes you end the game with pie on your face, sometimes you end it with egg on your face. For all the people screaming for Marcus Thames' head this morning, remember that 1) he had the biggest hit of the night on Monday and 2) the only reason he was even in last night's game at that point is because Nick Swisher is injured and because the team's undying love for Boone Logan meant that defensive whiz Greg Golson was sent down before the game to make room for Mark Melancon.

No one is ever going to confuse Thames with a Gold Glover. That ball should have been caught easily, and Thames would be the first to tell you that. But the team is banged up right now and they had to roll the dice with Thames out there in the late innings. There were no better options. Sometimes shit happens.

Aside from Thames, there's plenty of blame to go around this morning. The Yankees had the bases loaded with one out in the sixth and Brett Gardner and Mark Teixeira both failed to push what would have been valuable insurance runs across. Joba was definitively not of the 2007 vintage last night, as he had an eighth inning meltdown for his second consecutive outing. A-Rod made a costly error of his own in the ninth. Mo got squeezed on a number of pitches.

By his own admission, Joe Girardi's bullpen is "a mess", and with nothing but assorted spare parts left out there, he still chose to play for the tie in the ninth inning, giving up an out so Francisco Cervelli could sacrifice the potential tying run to third base. In the end, that didn't work out, and we could only wonder what the Yankees could have done with that extra out since the game ended with the tying and winning runs in scoring position. And that same short bench that left Thames in for defense in the ninth, whittled down to just one healthy position player due to injuries and questionable personnel decisions, was the reason it was Randy Winn and not Jorge Posada or Nick Swisher at the plate with the potential winning run in scoring position.

But those are the breaks in a 162 game season. Sometimes they go your way, as they did Monday, sometimes they don't. You gotta take the bad with the good.


  1. Best musical connection yet...

    And the Girardi press conference regarding the bullpen was great. Need to find a link to that.

  2. Good times, bad times - you're right, that's baseball. But, come on Marcus, if you're a major league player, you have to make that catch!

  3. Absolutely, that's a highly catchable ball. But errors happen, and anyone who's seen Thames play the OF this year shouldn't be surprised that it happened. Even one of the ones he managed to haul in last night turned into an adventure.

    The two points I was trying to make is that you can't vilify the guy for what happened last night if you're not willing to discount what he did Monday and that he was hardly the only guilty party. It takes a whole team (plus a few management decisions) to blow a four fun lead with six outs to go.

    Jimmy - was there another press conference last night or do you mean the one after Monday's game? I went to bed as soon Winn fanned last night.

  4. I think it was the same conference you referred to. They showed a bit of it on the MY9 feed last night and you can sense Girardi wanting to vent a bit about the bullpen woes and having to turn to Javy when he really didn't want to.

    I'm sensing a Girardi ejection soon. Empirically speaking, they always seem to ratchet up the team's play a bit.

  5. Yeah, that was after Monday's game then. I didn't see that so much as him venting about the pen as it was him coming to Javy's defense and - in the public eye at least - dispelling the theory that Javy was skipped because they didn't want him pitching against the Sox at home.

    Of course, as I laid out yesterday, there were a number of other available options that wouldn't have forced Vazquez to the longman role. But hey, at least we still have Boone Logan.