A. Rodriguez 3B
I. Rodriguez C
Notes: The Yankees have won 5 of 7 and are seeking a three-game sweep of the Orioles. … The Yankees start the day five games behind Boston in the wild-card race. … The Yankees are 3-2 on a road trip that ends today. … The team is off tomorrow and starts a three-game series at home against the Red Sox on Tuesday.
A TALE OF TWO PITCHERS: Daniel Cabrera is 3-0, 3.15 in three starts against the Yankees. He is 5-8, 5.23 in his other 24 starts.
JUST WALK HIM: Nick Markakis is 10 of 13 with four extra-base hits in his career against Rasner. That’s a 1.940 OPS. Oddly, he has driven in just one run.
HAS ANYBODY SEEN DAMASO? Marte has appeared in two of the last nine games, throwing 12 pitches and getting two outs. It’s time to ask Joe Girardi is he’s hurt. Check back for the answer later.
CAPTAIN CONSISTENT: Derek Jeter is 19 of 41 and has a nine-game hit streak.
CASTAWAY: Wilson Betemit has appeared in four games and had three at-bats since Aug. 13. Cody Ransom has become the defensive replacement at first base.
GODZILLA ON THE PROWL: Hideki Matsui is only 3 for 18 since he came back. But those three hits are two homers and a double, worth four RBI.
SEE YA: The Yankees have hit 12 homers in the last six games. Then again, they’ve walked only five times in the last five games and whiffed 49 times.
CLOSING TIME: The bullpen has thrown seven scoreless innings in this series.
Check back later for updates.
UPDATE, 12:13 p.m.: Joe Girardi said Damaso Marte is fine. Marte didn’t quite say that. “I needed to rest,” he said. “But I’m OK now.”
In other news, Joba Chamberlain will throw 35 pitches in the bullpen tomorrow, which is only five more than he threw yesterday. Joba hoped he would be closer to 50. The Yankees are clearly going to be extra, extra cautious with him.
Not much else to tell you. It’s usually pretty uneventful before day games.
UPDATE, 1:51 p.m.: Hey, Rasner got Markakis out. That’s four times in 14 at-bats.
UPDATE, 1:58 p.m.: The O’s have gone back to back five times this season, four of them coming against the Yankees.
Here’s the thing I don’t understand about Rasner. He was taken out of the rotation after a poor performance on July 29 against Baltimore. Then Ian Kennedy stunk it up in Anaheim, so Rasner got a second chance. Not really because of anything he did.
So now the Yankees are trying to stay alive and they’re starting a guy whose 5-9 with a 4.93 ERA.
UPDATE, 2:11 p.m.: Here is my professional sportswriter analysis of Daniel Cabrera: He doesn’t have a blessed clue where the ball is going.
UPDATE, 2:48 p.m.: They have a day off tomorrow. Rasner needs to be on a short leash. Meanwhile Pudge Rodriguez is 2 of his last 17 and has one RBI as a Yankee in 44 ABs.
UPDATE, 3:14 p.m.: Why is Bobby Abreu halfway to third on Giambi’s fly ball to deep center? It was either a home run or a catch. He should have tagged up and gone to third.
It didn’t matter when Nady got the double. But it’s another example of how poorly the Yankees have run the bases this season.
Meanwhile, anybody who thinks Cabrera is throwing at A-Rod doesn’t understand baseball. He had no idea where the ball was going and rarely does.
UPDATE, 3:54 p.m.: David Robertson is going to have earn this win. Meanwhile, Jose Veras has thrown 32 pitches the last two days and Rivera 25. Veras might be out and Mo limited to one inning.
This one isn’t ending 7-5, that’s for sure.
UPDATE, 4:03 p.m.: Like I said. And that was before I knew Edwar Ramirez was coming in to pitch.
Kicking away a 7-2 lead against a last-place team is not a particularly good sign, is it?
UPDATE, 4:22 p.m.: Edwar Ramirez has allowed 12 home runs in 67.2 innings in the majors. He’s a useful guy in sports but he’s a tough guy to trust late in games against good hitters.
UPDATE, 5:01 p.m.: The well-rested Damaso Marte just got two huge outs. I would think he stays in for the 8th inning, nobody warming up.
This game is so long that A-Rod had to get his hair frosted again in the 6th inning.
UPDATE, 5:06 p.m.: With all due respect to Damaso Marte, the Yankees would be wise to score a few runs here. Like five.
UPDATE, 5:08 p.m.: And just I finish that update, Giambi grounds into a double play.
UPDATE, 5:11 p.m.: Now that Boston has beat Toronto in extra innings, the Yankees cannot afford to let this game slip away. They need to go home with some momentum, not a terrible loss.
UPDATE, 5:17 p.m.: They’re asking a lot of Mariano here. 1.1 innings and 15 pitches on Friday, 1 inning and 10 pitches yesterday and now 1.1 innings today. It’s not the pitch count that gets closers, it’s the up and downs.
But what choice does Girardi have? They have to win games and they burned out the bullpen thanks to Rasner and Pavano.
UPDATE, 5:37 p.m.: That’s a three-game sweep for the Yankees, who have won six of eight overall. It got a little hairy there at the end, didn’t it?
Super work by the bullpen in this series: two runs over 12.2 innings.