RED SOX (94-65)
Alfredo Aceves (1-0, 1.38) has never faced any of the Boston hitters.
Notes: The Yankees have won seven of eight and 10 of their last 12. … The Yankees are 7-8 against the Red Sox this season. … The Yankees have scored two or fewer runs 50 times this season and three or fewer runs 69 times. … Boston trails Tampa Bay by two games for the AL East with three to play. Tampa’s magic number is one.
FINDING HIS WAY: It’s only 10 games but Brett Gardner seems to be figuring out what kind of offensive player he can be in the big leagues. He is 11 of his last 27 with six runs scored, four extra-base hits and three stolen bases.
NEWLY CONSISTENT: Robinson Cano has hit in eight straight games at 11 of 28. He has struck out only one time in that stretch.
Back later with updates as they become available.
UPDATE, 4:16 p.m.: Just spoke to Mariano Rivera. He has been been pitching with a sore shoulder all season. There is inflammation and calcification. He has been given two options: a series of injections and rehab or surgery. He has not made a decision but seems to be leaning toward the surgery.
As to the events of last night …
Rivera told Girardi on Tuesday that his body was cranky. He told him on Wednesday before he left Toronto that his shoulder was hurt. Mariano told Girardi he wanted to break the news to the media. Mariano is the kind of guy who doesn’t want anybody speaking for him.
So Girardi invented the “it’s his standard physical” story. But Cashman went with the truth. When Girardi was confronted with the truth after the game, he stuck with his lie.
The whole thing likely could have been avoided if they all managed to get on the same page in the first place. Once the cat was out of the bag, Girardi should have copped to it. Once the general manager of the team admits the truth, it’s out there. Kudos to Girardi for doing what Mo wanted. But they needed to find a better way to do it.
Essentially, none of that much matters. What does is that Rivera believes he will be ready for spring training. Meanwhile, it’s pretty amazing that he has had the season he has had with a bum shoulder.
UPDATE, 5:53 p.m.: And the news keeps pouring in as it pours in Boston.
Joe Girardi apologized to reporters for lying to them over the course of the season and said he has to come up with a better way to give us information about injuries. He said the only way he can prove he’s serious is by his actions moving forward. So we’ll see what happens.
Meanwhile … Andy Pettitte was back in New York today for a second MRI on his left shoulder. This was a dye-contrast MRI, which I’m told is the best MRI possible in terms of revealing damage. It came back clean. That does not mean they’re bringing him back, necessarily. But it clears the path.
Meanwhile … Brian Cashman said we will know “sooner than later” whether he will return as GM of the Yankees. It won’t be this weekend but could be early next week by the sound of it. Cashman said there has not been a contract offer from the Yankees but there has been an expression of support in terms of them wanting him back.
I’ll post some quotes later once I transcribe them. I think it’s 50-50 whether Cashman returns and that may be optimistic. It could depend whether Hal Steinbrenner can control Hank Steinbrenner or to what degree Hank is involved with baseball operations.
Hank’s foolish statements and interference (like during the Santana negotiations, the Posada negotiations, etc.) are not conducive for a GM to do his job. Either Cashman decides he can deal with that or he goes elsewhere. At some point, dealing with such nonsense must be tiresome.
Know this much: Whether you like Cashman as the GM or not, if he leaves it’ll be chaos in the organization. They don’t have anybody ready to step in and many of the people in baseball operations, scouting, the minors, etc. are his people. Girardi is his manager, etc.
Think for a second how Girardi will be next season if he’s working for a GM who didn’t hire him. The first time the Yankees fall below .500 The Girardi Watch will be on.
Cashman has a plan, he’s a smart guy and the Yankees would be wise to let him do his job. Nobody gets forever, but he should get some time to get this thing fixed.
UPDATE, 6:54 p.m.: I know this will come as a shock. But the start of the game has been delayed by rain.
Oh, and Ortiz was scratched. Sean Casey now at first and batting seventh.
UPDATE, 6:59 p.m.: This just in from the Red Sox, the rain is supposed to stop. They’re hoping to start sometime around 8 p.m. I’ll keep you posted.
UPDATE, 7:17 p.m.: They took the tarp off, groomed the field and now it’s raining again and the tarp is being put back on. So much for the 8:05 start.
Meanwhile, Red Sox Nation is guzzling overpriced beer in the concourses.
UPDATE, 7:42 p.m: Matsuzaka has been scratched. If the game ever starts, David Pauley would start for Boston. Sure, the Japanese writers get to go home.
UPDATE, 7:43 p.m.: Just FYI, I’ve decided not to post Joe Girardi’s pre-game audio, which would include the apology he issued to the writers. Frankly, it’s between him and us and I’m not sure it’s something he would want out there. Even if he didn’t care, I don’t see a need to continue this story beyond where it is already.
To me, 99 percent of this is about Mo and his ability to pitch. The rest is just stuff we need to figure out.
UPDATE, 7:48 p.m.: OK, tarp coming off again. First pitch at 8:35 p.m. Or so they hope.
UPDATE, 8:41 p.m.: The game is underway. I have a few newspaper stories to finish, so the updates might be sparse for an hour. Sorry about that.
UPDATE, 8:58 p.m.: Hmm, Alfredo Aceves could be the Mexican Chase Wright if this keeps up.
UPDATE, 9:37 p.m.: It’s raining here again. The goal is probably to get five in and call it a night.
UPDATE, 10:25 p.m.: Jeter is out of game with a sore left hand. Meanwhile it’s pouring again and the game has been delayed.
UPDATE, 10:45 p.m.: Bad news for all you Cody Ransom fans out there. Because the game has not gone five innings, it would be wiped out if they don’t start again.
UPDATE, 10:52 p.m.: Cody Ransom’s bid at history will continue. The game is scheduled to start again at 11:05 p.m.
UPDATE, 11:12 p.m.: OK, the game has started again and we’re three outs away from being official. Excellent news for Brett Gardner and Cody Ransom.
Meanwhile, I am declaring myself no longer responsible for anything I may write from this point forward due to lack of sleep and Red Bull. If you’re in the Kenmore Square area and want to bring me a Red Bull, I have $25 Canadian to give you and a bunch of their coins.
UPDATE, 11:23 p.m.: The Phil Coke Scoreless Era has come to a sad end as he allowed a run. He went 11.2 innings before giving up a run.
Meanwhile, the Red Sox and Yankees have a combined payroll of roughly $350 million and players in the game at the moment include Cody Ransom, Wilson Betemit, Chad Moeller, Brett Gardner, Phil Coke, Gil Velazquez, Chris Carter, George Kottaras, Jon Van Every and Kevin Cash.
UPDATE, 11:57 p.m.: Bobby Abreu has 99 RBI and 99 runs scored.
Meanwhile, Robinson Cano is 2 for 4 with two doubles and four RBI. If Girardi had benched him for a day in May would the Yankees be going to the playoffs? I’m sort of serious about that.
UPDATE, 12:17 a.m.: Thats 100 RBI for Bobby Abreu. He has reached that plateau for six straight seasons, joining only A-Rod and Albert Pujols on that list.
Bobby asked for the ball for got it. He’ll get a lot of money from somebody next season.
Assorted drunks are now chanting “Let’s Go Red Sox” as they’re losing 17-5.
UPDATE, 12:49 a.m.: You’re killing me, Melky. You too, Chris Britton.
UPDATE, 12:52 a.m.: The game is over. Thanks for reading, catch you tomorrow. Or, to be accurate, later today.