Thursday, May 13, 2010

Game 34: I Wish It Would Rain

It's getaway day in Motown, as the Yankees and Tigers wrap up their four game series. The Yankees dropped the first two games of the set, but rebounded to take the nightcap of yesterday's day-night doubleheader. They'll look to second that emotion today, as they try to salvage a split and avoid just their second series loss of 2010.

Playing their second matinee in as many days, the Yanks will send their ace to the bump. CC Sabathia had his last start spoiled by rain in Boston, with the umps calling for the tarp while the Big Fella was a mere strike away from qualifying for the win. He may not even get the chance to be robbed thusly this afternoon.

There's heavy rain in the forecast for Detroit this afternoon, and another rainout is real possibility. While makeup games are generally an inconvenience, this time around the Yankees may not mind so much if the skies open up. The two clubs have three mutual off days the rest of the way, including one in September that could be easily managed once rosters have expanded. Not only would a rainout today allow the Yanks to miss Tigers' ace Justin Verlander, but the Mother Nature induced off day would also negate the need for a spot starter on Sunday. Given that, and all the nagging injuries the team is currently nursing, a rainout today might be welcomed.

If they do in fact play, Nick Swisher won't be in the lineup. The right fielder was pulled from last night's game with a sore bicep. Knowing Swish, he probably injured it by asking the ladies if they had "tickets to the gun show" one too many times. With Swisher out, and Curtis Granderson and Nick Johnson on the DL, the Yankees' outfield and DH situation is fairly punchless.

To that end, it appears Juan Miranda will finally be activated, two days after being summoned from Scranton. Miranda will provide a more palatable DH option, as Ben Kabak at RAB touched upon this morning. Under normal circumstances defacto longman Ivan Nova might be the one to go, but with the possibility of a lengthy rain delay today and the potential need for a spot start Sunday, Nova will stick around. Greg Golson is still needed with the Swisher injury, so for now, it'll be Kevin Russo heading back to Scranton.

Day in, day out, my tear-stained face, pressed against the window pane
My eyes search the skies, desperately for rain
‘Cause raindrops will hide my teardrops
And no one will ever know.
That I'm cryin’, (crying) cryin’ (crying) when I go outside
To the world outside my tears, I refuse to explain.
I just wish it would rain. (Oh how I wish that it would rain)
Oh let it rain, rain, rain

[Song Notes: We can't let the Yankees only scheduled trip to Detroit this year pass by without selecting a Motown song. With acts like the Four Tops, The Supremes, Marvin Gaye, and Smokey Robinson and the Miracles to choose from, there is no shortage of excellent options. But instead we'll go with perhaps the most famous of all the Motown groups: The Temptations.

Of course, we did use a Stevie Wonder song on Sunday night, and he got his start on Motown, but I don't think of Wonder as a Motown artist. Part of that has to do with much of Wonder's career, including his best work, coming after the label moved to Los Angeles, which essentially ended the classic Motown era. A bigger part of it though, I think has to do with the fact that Wonder played his own intstruments, creating a sound that was distinct from the other Motown arists. The other Motown acts were strictly vocal groups, but were all connected by the same "Motown Sound" courtesy of the label's session musicians: The Funk Brothers.

The Funk Brothers were as integral to Motown's success as owner Berry Gordy, the hit machine songwriting team of Holland-Dozier-Holland, or any of the recording artists, but they didn't have nearly the same level of fame. In 2002, Standing in the Shadows of Motown was released, an excellent documentary chronicling the careers of the Funk Brothers. If you like Motown and you're looking to kill time during a rain delay today, I highly recommend checking it out.]


Miranda makes his 2010 debut not as the DH, but as the first baseman, as Mark Teixeira gets a half day off. With Swisher out of the lineup for the moment, Brett Gardner is entrenched in the two spot. Greg Golson takes Swisher's spot in right field, and combines with Gardner and Randy Winn to produce the outfield with the lowest slugging percentage in Yankee history. I might have made that last part up, but it can't be too far from the truth. On the flip side, virtually anything in the air today should be an automatic out.
Derek Jeter SS
Brett Gardner CF
Mark Teixeira DH
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Jorge Posada C
Juan Miranda 1B
Randy Winn LF
Greg Golson RF

Austin Jackson CF
Johnny Damon DH
Magglio Ordonez RF
Miguel Cabrera 1B
Brennan Boesch LF
Brandon Inge 3B
Gerald Laird C
Scott Sizemore 2B


  1. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 12:34 PM

    Jeter is 4 for his last 39. Slumps happen, but Jeter's resurgence would help considerably as the Yankees face a tough upcoming stretch against the Twins, Red Sox, and Rays.

    BTW, I'm annoyed that the Yanks haven't played a game in The Bronx against Boston thus far, while needing to head into the dump known as Fenway for six this far, yet get only two games apiece against Boston and TB. Joke.

  2. There you go Jason... Jeter knocks an infield single. Slumpbuster?

  3. Jeters slump is kind of odd to me. In the beginning of the season he was hitting nothing hard and getting hits, now he is hitting the ball fairly hard and can't buy a hit.

  4. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 1:36 PM

    I sure hope so, Jay. We know he'll bust out eventually, but sooner rather than later, especially as Teixeira is still trying to find it, and the injuries have made the bottom of the order a bit less reliable, would be great.

  5. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 1:41 PM

    Good point, Cliff--and good to see you.

  6. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 1:44 PM

    Dog shit RBI from Laird, 1-0. Against Verlander, who has been tough beyond the first inning--need to respond.

  7. Good to see you too man.

    Yeah, that was bullshit. As Singleton said, "that was either a mistake or the best piece of hitting I have ever seen"

  8. Yeah that was a weak, weak one from Laird.

    Verlander is dealing but it only takes one swing to even it up.

  9. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 1:59 PM

    Amen, Jay. It's early, but the longer C.C. can hold it, the better. It's that kind of day and game when a run or two could make all the difference.

    Cano swatting one out to start the fourth would suit me fine.

    C.C. is at 28 pitches through 3; Verlander is at 56.

  10. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 2:01 PM

    So much for that. Jorge?

  11. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 2:10 PM

    C.C. has 29 pitches through 3 1/3. He must hold the hard line there.

  12. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 2:12 PM

    Jeez, Cabrera homers to right. 2-0; I don't like how this is shaping up, especially with the offense languishing recently.

  13. Ouch. Fucking Miguel Cabrera.

  14. Just got out of a shitty 2 hour meeting, saw the score and now wishes i was back in that shitty meeting.

  15. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 3:41 PM

    Should have rained. The offense again laid a turd, although Verlander is tough.