Derek Jeter SS
Johnny Damon LF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Jorge Posada C
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher RF
Melky Cabrera CF
Andy Pettitte P
Pitching: LHP Andy Pettitte (2-0, 2.37 postseason ERA)
Jimmy Rollins SS
Shane Victorino CF
Chase Utley 2B
Ryan Howard 1B
Jayson Werth RF
Raul Ibanez LF
Pedro Feliz 3B
Carlos Ruiz C
Cole Hamels P
Pitching: LHP Cole Hamels (1-1, 6.75 postseason ERA)
TIME/TV: 7:57 p.m., FOX
WEATHER: Cloudy with a chance of showers tonight and temperatures falling from the high 60s during the day to 50s (and maybe high 40s) at night. Medium winds. Check out the full forecast here.
STATE OF THE STRIPES: The Yankees are tied at 1 in the best-of-seven and are three wins away from their 27th World Series title. This is the 54th World Series in which the teams have been tied at 1 game apiece, and the team winning Game 2 has gone on to win the title on 28 of the previous 53 occasions (though only once in the last six).
THE SWING GAME: People often talk about Game 3 as the swing game in a World Series and there’s some truth to it: The team winning Game 3 has gone on to win in 35 of 53 World Series that were tied at 1, including each of the last two and nine of the last 10. The lone exception? You probably already know it. The Yankees won Game 3 of the 2003 World Series but then lost three straight to the Marlins to lose the Series.
MAPQUEST IT: The approximately 108 miles from Yankee Stadium to Citizens Bank Park is among the shortest distances between World Series sites. It was 1 1/2 miles from the Polo Grounds to Yankee Stadium (Yankees/Giants); nine miles from Yankee Stadium to Shea (Yankees/Mets); 15 miles between Ebbets Field and Yankee Stadium (Yankees/Dodgers); 22 miles between Candlestick Park and Oakland Coliseum (Giants/A’s); and 98 miles between Memorial Stadium and Veterans Stadium (Orioles/Phillies). Of course, the shortest distance between World Series sites is zero: In 1921 and ’22, all World Series games were played at the Polo Grounds and in 1944 all games were played at Sportsman’s Park in St. Louis.
ELITE COMPANY: Tonight is Andy Pettitte’s 11th World Series start for the Yankees, which is the second-most in team history. Pettitte passes Waite Hoyt and Red Ruffing, and is now only trailing Whitey Ford, who made an insane 22 World Series starts. He is 3-4, 3.90 in his 10 previous starts for the Yankees, and 0-0, 4.26 in one World Series start with the Astros.
HOT TO COLD: Alex Rodriguez had a hit in all nine playoff games leading up to the World Series but is 0-for-8 with six strikeouts in the first two games of the World Series. In case you were wondering, the World Series record for strikeouts is 12, set by the Royals Willie Wilson back in 1980 against – yes – the Phillies.
CAPTAIN CLIMBS: More evidence why Derek Jeter should always be hitting, instead of bunting: After going 4-for-8 in the first two games, Jeter’s career World Series average is .314 (43-for-137) which is fifth-highest all-time among players with at least 100 ABs. Who’s ahead of him? Only Lou Gehrig, Eddie Collins, Babe Ruth and Steve Garvey.
RANDOM QUESTION OF THE DAY: What is the best of the go-to tabloid headlines about an Andy Pettitte start? (Personally, I’ve always been a fan of “PETT ROCKS” as opposed to “ANDY DANDY”, “RAGGEDY ANDY” or any others. For some reason, “PETT ROCKS” always makes me laugh.)
IF THERE WERE WALK-TO-THE-PLATE-MUSIC IN REAL LIFE, TODAY’S WOULD BE: Parents Just Don’t Understand by DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince.
Back with more later. Joe Girardi is scheduled to be in the interview room at 4:50 p.m.
UPDATE, 4:31 p.m.: Chad here. Sam and I just got to Citizens Bank Park. It’s cloudy with some light rain falling. On the way in, a radio station announced that it’s supposed to start really raining at 7, but it’s not supposed to last too long. The sky doesn’t look especially promising, but the game is three and a half hours away, so these clouds aren’t the ones to worry about.
UPDATE, 5:01 p.m.: Girardi just announced CC Sabathia will start Game 4. Burnett and Pettitte could go short as well. Audio shortly.
UPDATE, 5:19 p.m.: Here’s the audio from Girardi’s interview. The news about CC comes a few minutes in and then he talks more about it near the end.
UPDATE, 5:26 p.m.: Chad here, back with some notes from Girardi’s beat writer session. We mostly talked more about the decision to start Sabathia, but there were a few other newsy items.
• If the Yankees had a 3-0 lead after three games, it “probably” would have been Chad Gaudin starting Game 4.
• In his press conference, Girardi said Gaudin would be available in relief tonight and tomorrow, but in the session with the beat writers he clarified, saying Gaudin is still an emergency option. He would prefer to save him for Game 5 or 6. Gaudin is simply far enough removed from that Tuesday bullpen session that he could pitch long relief if absolutely necessary.
• Another “probably” answer when asked whether he would announce a Game 5 starter tomorrow.
• Starting Hideki Matsui was never a serious option. Girardi was not convinced that Matsui could move well enough to spend eight or nine innings in the field.
• Matsui is not necessarily the first pinch hitter used tonight. Girardi wants to pick his spot.
UPDATE, 5:42 p.m.: Here’s some audio from Mariano Rivera, who came to the interview room earlier. Mo was asked plenty about how being used for multiple innings (and on back-to-back days) can affect his pitches at this point in his career, as well as his thoughts on Hughes and Joba. Those guys will be important tonight since Girardi essentially admitted Rivera won’t be available for two innings.
UPDATE, 5:53 p.m.: Whoa, did some of you guys finally get a hold of Tim McCarver???
(Actually that’s just a picture of what I was doing at this time a year ago – which is to say I was carving pumpkins with my wife and we decided to mess around with a new digital camera)
UPDATE, 6:34 p.m.: Yankees are about halfway through BP. So far, it’s still dry here, though there is plenty of cloud cover. We’ll see.
UPDATE, 7:11 p.m.: Yankees are off the field and it’s raining as the grounds crew rakes the dirt. Not a heavy, heavy rain but definitely noticeable.
UPDATE, 7:37 p.m.: The tarp has been on the field for a few minutes, but the rain seems to be stopping. In fact, I don’t see it raining at all at this point.
UPDATE, 7:48 p.m.: Just kidding. Now it’s raining harder again. Cole Hamels went out to the bullpen but is just sitting there under cover with some other Philly pitchers. There do not appear to be any Yankee pitchers (let alone Andy Pettitte) in the visitors’ bullpen. At this point, I’d say starting on time is pretty much impossible.
UPDATE, 8 p.m.: No official word, but since first pitch was supposed to have been three minutes ago, it would appear we’re in a delay. There was a group of military personnel holding a giant American flag on the warning track for a few minutes, but now they are heading back inside. That could mean we’re not starting for awhile or, I suppose, that we’re starting soon and they’re just removing that part of the ceremonies.
UPDATE, 8:18 p.m.: It’s Chad again, and I feel like I’m back in Scranton looking at a tarp on the field but seeing no rain in the sky. It honestly does not appear to be raining at all. Can’t see any rain in front of the outfield lights. Can’t see any splashes in the puddles on the tarp. I have to assume the grounds crew is expecting rain to start falling again soon, or maybe they’re just leaving the tarp on as long as possible just in case. Surely right field drains perfectly well at Citizens Bank Park.
UPDATE, 8:25 p.m.: It’s Chad again, and this is clearly my fault. A matter of minutes after my last update, it started raining. Weather is clearly not a strength of mine.
UPDATE, 8:37 p.m.: Word seems to be that we will play baseball tonight at some point, but when, exactly, is unsure. Could be an hour or so. We’ll see. To pass the time, I’ve been ranking my favorite Halloween candy. My current list:
1. Peanut M&Ms
2. Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups
4. Nestle Crunch bar
My 6th grade math teacher was always a great house to stop at when I was a kid. She gave out full-sized – like, what you’d buy in a store – Hershey bars and wrapped a word problem (“If Sam has 50 pieces of candy and Chad has 32 pieces of candy …”) around the label. Good times.
UPDATE, 8:50 p.m.: With Tenth Avenue Freeze Out playing throughout the stadium, the tarp is being pulled off the field.
UPDATE, 9:07 p.m.: Nice job by the cast of Glee with the anthem. Mike Schmidt just threw out the first pitch and we’re (supposedly) about five minutes from first pitch.
UPDATE, 9:12 p.m.: Chad here to point out that the Phillies are now playing “Run This Town” by Jay-Z. I get that it’s a cool and catchy song, one that would get a baseball team pumped for a World Series game, but it’s maybe not the best decision to play a song by the guy who just performed at your opponent’s stadium and remains a New York icon. The Yankees don’t play The Roots or Will Smith before their games.
UPDATE, 9:15 p.m.: Full disclosure: I pretty much love the Phillie Phanatic.
UPDATE, 9:17 p.m.: And we’re off. Rain delay of 1 hour, 20 minutes and it’s 63 degrees at first pitch. Enjoy the game.
UPDATE, 9:35 p.m.: Rollins is all over the base paths already. It will be interesting to see just how much Pettitte can control the Phillies running game. Remember, with Davey Lopes as their first base coach, they’ve got an expert on their bench.
UPDATE, 9:42 p.m.: Nice curve from Pettitte to get Howard and get out of it.
UPDATE, 9:46 p.m.: Wow, first pitch of the inning and it’s a fastball on A-Rod’s arm. You wouldn’t think there would be any intent since he hasn’t had a hit all series …
UPDATE, 9:52 p.m.: Hamels looks like he’s rising to the occasion, at least so far. His change-up – as Chad blogged about yesterday – is critical and it appears to be sharp.
UPDATE, 9:56 p.m.: That actually wasn’t a terrible pitch from Pettitte – it was down, at least – but Werth is having a monster postseason and he flicked it over the left-field fence. 1-0 Phillies.
UPDATE, 9:58 p.m.: So far, Pettitte has gotten out one right-handed hitter tonight (Victorino). That pitch to Feliz was right in the middle and it got crushed off the wall.
UPDATE, 10:10 p.m.: We’re probably going to be seeing some of Alfredo Aceves tonight, as Pettitte has thrown 51 pitches through two innings. Not ideal for the Yankees, who need to start making Hamels work a little harder.