The following are ten “Keys to Victory” that the Yankees need to continue doing, or improve on, during the second half to win the American League East.
Number 10: Derek Jeter
I will never say a bad thing about Derek Jeter, but I do feel he needs to pick it up a bit in the second half if the Yankees want to take the AL East. The good thing is that if you asked Jeter himself, I’m sure he’d tell you the same thing.
Number 9: Mariano Rivera
With the exception of one or two times, Mo has been his usual lights-out self during the first half of the season. If the Bombers want to keep winning, Mo needs to stay on track and stay healthy. Mo opted out the All Star Game so he could rest up…hopefully it helps him. Mo needs to stay injury free!
Number 8: Mark Teixeira
Big Tex finished off the first half with a pretty good showing, but that needs to carry over to the second half. Tex did nothing the first two months of the season, but somehow his teammates picked him up. If the Yanks want to win it, Tex needs to continue on his hot streak.
Number 7: A.J Burnett
Like Teixeira, Burnett struggled a little in the first half of the season. Burnett had the worst month of June in the history of the Yankees, but he did bounce back with two good start in July. Burnett needs to put his memories of his awful June behind him and ride the wave of his last two starts all the way to October.
Number 6: Javy Vasquez
Sorry about the Braves pic; I couldn’t find a good Yankees one. Anyway…on to Javy. As we all know, Javy had a HORRIBLE start this season. What’d he go? 0-5 with a few no decisions? I don’t even want to look it up. To his credit, he did bounce back and has improved his record to 7-7, but if the Yankees want to win the division Vasquez needs to keep this up. Pitching wins pennants they say and Javy needs to pitch well in order to win the pennant!
Number 5: Andy Pettitte
Not much to explain here. Pettitte has put up career numbers so far, and, in my mind, has been the ace of the pitching staff. The man called “Ttitte,” needs his career season to continue in order to lead the Bombers back to the fall classic.
Number 4: Alex Rodriguez
While A-Rod has not had a horrible year by any means, he has not put up “A-Rod” type numbers in the first half. Teammates like Robinson Cano and Nick Swisher have picked A-Rod up in the first half, but there is only so much these two can do. A-Rod is our cleanup hitter and he needs to produce with RBI’s when it matters the most.
Number 3: Phil Hughes
Much like Andy Pettitte, Hughes has had a career year. Also like Pettitte, he has collected eleven wins in the first half and is hungry for more. With Burnett and Vasquez being inconsistent, Hughes needs to go out every five days and bring the house down. If Hughes can get through the second half with only losing one or two games, the Yanks will be in a good shape.
Number 2: Robinson Cano
Really, what is there to say? Robinson Cano has been the MVP of baseball for the first half of the season. He is one of the main reasons that the Yanks have the most wins in the majors. Cano needs continue doing whatever he is doing because not only is he having a career year, he is leading the Yankees to October.
Like I said earlier…pitching wins pennants. In the first half the Yankees bullpen was horrible, save for Mariano. Half of the guys were on the DL and the other half had ERA’s over 3. That needs to change in the second half. If the Yankees want to have any chance of winning the east, Joba, Robertson, and company better get on track and pitch. No more of this “giving up the lead late” garbage. The pen needs to pitch. ‘Nuff said.
I hope you enjoyed.
“I am getting reports, unconfirmed reports, that early this morning Yankees principle owner, George Steinbrenner suffered a massive heart attack in Tampa, Florida. We will have more news as it becomes available,” he said.
Right away, I knew the news that would be forthcoming.
I immediately pulled over to the side of the road and pulled out my iPhone. With the technological world as it is today, the first thing I did was sign onto Twitter. Right away, I saw all of the tweets about “The Boss.” Some said he was in critical condition, some said he had already passed; I didn’t want to believe any of it.
I put my phone away and continued on my way. About seven minutes later I was in the parking lot of Modell’s, listening to the radio, when I heard the news…
“The New York Daily News is now confirming that at 6:30 AM EST George M. Steinbrenner, the principle owner of the New York Yankees, has died of a massive heart attack in Tampa, Florida.”
I was stunned.
Sure, he was eighty years old, and we all knew this day was coming, but to have it happen so soon is heartbreaking.
Steinbrenner, who took over as Yankees owner in 1973 and lead the team to 11 American League Pennants, 16 AL East Titles, and 7 World Series championships, was dead at the age of eighty.
I’m still stunned.
As we look back on the legacy of George Steinbrenner, one word comes to mind: success. Mr. Steinbrenner will always be associated with winning, and I’m sure he wouldn’t want it any other way.
“We now have two new ghosts watching over our Yankees.”
“Two All Star Games will be played tonight; one in Anaheim and one in heaven.”
Thank You, Mr. Steinbrenner. You will be missed.
For the first time in his career Nick Swisher is an all star.
Swish won the final vote for the American League when he beat out Kevin Youkilis in the closest race in All Star Game final vote history. And of course, it had to come down to Yankees vs. Red Sox.
As usual…the Yankees won.
Over the last four days I have voted over two hundred times, including the 33 votes I cast at 3:33 pm EST for “Mission 33.”
I’m happy to say that I contributed to Swisher heading to California next week.
With an average of .298 and 14 home runs so far this season, he certainly deserves it.
Congrats Swish; it couldn’t have happened to a better guy.
Those were the words belted out by a drunk fan in section 105 during Mondays game versus the Cleveland Indians and they couldn’t been more true.
My girlfriend and I went to the game Monday, Memorial Day, and sat in the best seats that we’ve ever had.
Section 105. Row 12. Seats 21 and 22.
Now,even though the tickets said row 12, we actually were sitting in the third row, right above the right field wall! For some reason, the outfield sections start at row 10, not row 1, but I’m not going to complain.
We got into the stadium at about 12:30 and headed right for our seats. In the days leading up to the game I kept ranting about how great our seats were, so I’m sure my girlfriend was getting tired of listening to me. I figured we’d go right to the seats so I could show her that I wasn’t kidding.
As we walked down into our section she said, “no way…Brian, are you kidding me?”
We sat there, enjoying the view, when Fransisco Cervelli appeared about ten feet in front of us. He was having a long toss with one of the bullpen catchers.
As Cervelli was having a catch, Curtis Granderson, Brett Gardner, Nick Swisher, and Robbie Cano all came out of the dugout and began to stretch, just behind second base. They ran some sprints and tossed the ball around, too.
As they were stretching and getting ready, Andy Pettitte and Dave Eiland headed across center field and into the dugout. Andy gave the fans a wave as we cheered him on.
The next guy to come out of the dugout was Alex Rodriguez. He did his stretching and running in right center, away from everyone else, which I thought was kind of funny.
Jeet was out next and he did ONE sprint before the P.A announcer said it was time for the National Anthem.
The players lined up down the baselines, minus A-Rod (who was still in center field), as we celebrated America with 4Troops.
Then, it was game time.
Pettitte pitched awesome, as usual, and improved his record to 7-1 in 2010. He kept the Indians hitters grounded and his only blemish was a solo home rune to Jhonny Paraltta in the second inning. No doubt he had another inning in him, but the near forty five minute Yankee half of the seventh was too long of a wait for him.
On a side note, I have gone to three games this season and Pettitte has pitched all three. Also, the Yanks are 7-0 in games that I have attended in the new stadium the past two seasons. I’m not complaining!
Not only did Monday’s game mark the first time I’ve ever attended a Yankees game on a holiday, but it was also the first time that I have ever witnessed a grand slam in person, courtesy of Alex Rodriguez.
A-Rod’s granny in the seventh padded the lead for the Yankees, helping them ultimately close out the Indians 11-2.
The only thing about Monday’s game that left a bad taste in my mouth can be summed up by this quote…
“No lead is safe with Chan Ho Park on the mound.” – Drunk guy in section 105.
Sure, he only gave up one run, but I have yet to see a good outing from Chop. It seems that every time he is on the mound something goes wrong. That is not something we need, especially come October.
No disrespect towards the guy, but Chop should be reunited with Randy Winn. He isn’t helping our club.
All in all, it was a great day, despite the extreme heat. It seems that I always say this, and as with every game I attend, I will never forget that day.
It was a great time, at a great game, with a great girl, on a great holiday.
“America and baseball is like peanut butter and jelly; one will never be as good without the other.” – Unknown.
Today, though, I gave it another try. Here was the result…
As cool as I was to have the Yankee logo next to my name, I was just happy that Bob Lorenz didn’t butcher my name.
And yes, I was sitting in front of my T.V. with my iPhone…waiting.
What made the moment even better was that Lorenz and Curry agreed with me. I can’t tell you what exactly they said, though, since I was to sidetracked looking at my name!
It was such a quick moment, but one that I will remember forever.
All that is really left to say is thanks A.J! I would have never thought to send them anything if you didn’t get on two weeks ago. Seriously, why us?
I guess it’s just our fifteen minutes of fame.
For a son, going to a baseball game with your dad is something that every baseball fan should want to do. It is a special bonding experience that both father and son can enjoy. There really isn’t anything like enjoying a hot dog and a beer (if your old enough) with your dad at a baseball game. It truly is a special experience.
The last time I went to a Yankees game with just my dad was on June 10, 2000 against the New York Mets. For Christmas 1999 my mom and sister got my dad and I tickets to the game. In addition, we got to take a Leprechaun Lines bus down to the game, so my dad didn’t have to drive in the Bronx. And if all that wasn’t enough we were sitting field level in left field, right below the big Budweiser sign. Yeah…it was a good time!
Now, fast forward ten years to May 15, 2010
We took the train down to the stadium and got there about an hour and a half before the game. As we were walking through the station, I looked across the way and saw the new Yankee Stadium…in full. It struck me as weird because you are not normally able to see the new stadium, in full, from the train station.
That was the sad sight I saw. Normally, it is wonderful to see Yankee Stadium, but as you can see…this was different. (Not standing) in front of me was the rubble of the old stadium. A sight that I had come to know and love as a child was gone.
After I got over the shock of seeing the rubble of the old stadium, we headed up to River Ave to see Bald Vinny. Unfortunately, Vinny was already inside the stadium, but I did manage to buy one of these…
Isn’t that awesome!?
We got inside the stadium at about 12:30 and headed to our seats. It was the first time that I was going to be sitting in the heart of the Bleacher Creatures, section 203, with the die hard Yankee fans. I was happy to see that we were in the last row of the section, which meant that we got to rest our backs on the wall!
After a hot dog, a pretzel, a beer for my dad, and a diet pepsi for me, it was game time!
For the first time ever I got to experience the roll call in the heart of the Bleacher Creatures! For those wondering, this is how it sounds…and there is a surprise at the end…
I was happy to see that I captured Gardner’s diving catch on video!
We sat in our seats until the sixth inning before getting up to go explore and stand behind the plate. For those who don’t know, you are able to stand pretty much anywhere in the stadium, as long as you aren’t blocking the entrance way to the section. We stood behind home plate for the seventh and eight innings before heading into the team store.
Now, for the longest time I’ve been looking for a Bret Gardner shirt. Modells? Nope. Dick’s Sporting Goods? Nope. Sports Authority? Nope. I just couldn’t find it anywhere.
Luckily though, I was at Yankee Stadium. We walked in, and as expected, there it was…for $30! But, I bought it anyway.
We walked back into the concourse and watch the ninth inning down the third base line. During an at bat by the Twins, I forget who, we almost caught a foul ball. It was the closest I’ve ever been to catching one, but the guy sitting in the seat two rows in front of us caught it instead.
After that we headed back to the train station…
So after talking about the time I had on Saturday, I guess it’s time to talk about the game. Lets start with Mark Teixeira.
Big Tex hit an absolute BOMB into the terrace level on Saturday afternoon, making it the highest hit home run in the new stadiums history. What I want to know is who is going to be the first one to hit it into the upper deck? Whoever it is…it will have to be a shot!
Pettitte made his return to the rotation on Saturday, after missing his last start due to soreness in his elbow. Heading into his start on Saturday Pettitte’s ERA was under 2.
As they always are when an old timer is banged up, questions were circulating on how Pettitte would rebound after being taken out of the game the week before. I’d say he did just fine…
Pettitte pitched 6 1/3 innings of two hit, shutout baseball to get his fifth win of the season.
Although, the Twins scored a run on a Joe Mauer single, the result was the same, as usual…
7 to 1 final.
The win made it the twelfth consecutive win for the Yankees over the Twins in the Bronx, dating back to last season.
Before I wrap this up, I just have to point out that the Yankees have something new this season as the players go up to bat. Apparently, with the exception of Jeter and Posada, the rest of the players have a graphic up similar to this one…
Suits, seriously? I bet A-Rod enjoyed that photo shoot. Haha!
Overall, I had a great time and I think my dad did, too. Nothing beats going to a Yankee game. Nothing.
Thanks for reading.