By Greg Brzozowski, WSOE Sports
The World Series has dawned upon us and I could not be happier. Baseball is my favorite sport to watch and the Fall Classic is the epitome of the entire season. This year is a little bit more special to me because I am a Yankees fan and am incredibly excited to see my favorite team playing for the championship again. But after Game One, I am a little less thrilled to be facing a red hot Phillies team. Cliff Lee and Chase Utley are instantly on my list of players I cannot stand to the point of a Red Sox level. Our youthful and talented bullpen has been near embarrassing (Phil Hughes). Not to mention, I am living or dying on every pitch and pickoff throw and will likely become completely clinically insane if any of these games go close… so I figured why not document my feelings and emotions during the course of the remaining games of the series to be put out in public. So, without further ado, here is my live game log for Game 2 of the World Series featuring the Philadelphia Phillies vs. the New York Yankees.
7:30 – Most people would expect that after Lee’s performance last night in how he put up one of the top 5 pitching performances in World Series history (also include Jack Morris in ’91, Bob Gibson in ’68, Don Larsen ’56, and Josh Beckett in 2003, that last one hurts to write) that I would change my original prediction of the Yankees winning this series in six games. Well, you’re wrong. Here’s my theory. While Lee pulled a Hall of Fame performance last night, I can honestly say that I do not see any other Phillies starter coming close to that effort. Four months ago 75% of the teams in the Major Leagues didn’t even want to look at Pedro Martinez. Cole Hamels is a shell of his postseason self from last year. And then Joe Blanton has a career ERA against the Yankees over 8. Not impressed.
7:36 – Having Jay-Z and Alicia Keys perform “Empire State of Mind” before game two was great; all that was missing was Jay-Z screaming out at the end “LET’S GO YANKEES”!!! You wonder if it would inspire the Phillies to bring their own rap duo to Citizens Bank Park for Game 3. I could see it now, “Ladies and Gentlemen. Give a round of applause to your opening act and Philadelphia natives, DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince!” Make it happen Philly.
8:09 – Just made it to Varsity to watch the game. I thought it would be on the big screen TV but no. Apparently the Virginia Tech and North Carolina College Football game is more important than Game 2 of the WORLD SERIES!
8:17 – Top of the second. Both A.J. Burnett and Pedro Martinez haven’t allowed a hit yet. Burnett just got Ryan Howard on a nice curveball. He looks good so far.
8:30 – That ball that just went fair for Raul Ibanez down the line for the ground rule double almost seems to be retribution for the missed Joe Mauer call in the ALDS. Matt Stairs finds a way to get the ball under Alex Rodriguez to Johnny Damon. The second I see it happen I know Ibanez is scoring of off Damon’s arm. On a side note Matt Stairs is fat. 1-0 Phillies.
Celebrity Tweet of the moment: Jason Stark, ESPN Senior Baseball Writer
“Stair’s last RBI on anything but a home run: How bout June 25 – an RBI double vs. the Rays. Yep, that was June 25.”
8:33 – The reason I like this matchup of Pedro vs. the Yanks is this lineup knows him so well. Derek Jeter, Damon, A-Rod, Hideki Matsui, Jerry Hairston Jr. (when with the Orioles), and Jorge Posada (when he eventually pinch hits for Jose Molina, who is Burnett’s personal catcher) all have experience against him. Because I don’t know if you knew this, but Pedro pitched for the Red Sox earlier in his career.
8:35 – Key at bat between A-Rod and Pedro. A-Rod starts out making Pedro throw a lot of pitches, Pedro wins getting A-Rod looking. Yankees can’t have that.
8:47 – Pedro out of the second with no trouble after the K on A-Rod, single by Matsui, great catch to rob Robinson Cano by Ibanez (he really wants me to not like him). Fly out by Hairston. Looks good, well pitching wise. Appearance wise he looks like a slob.
Just to be clear, out of anyone from the Yankees Red Sox rivalry that was at its finest earlier this decade, there was NO ONE I HATED MORE THAN PEDRO MARTINEZ!!! He normally killed the Yankees, was overly arrogant and cocky (remember the quote: “Who is Kareem Garcia?), loved to go head hunting, insulted the Yankee tradition, and attacked a 73 year old Don Zimmer, which was one of the most classless moves I will ever see in sports in my life. No matter what Pedro does I will always despise him. He didn’t help his cause to fix things when he said he is the most influential player to ever play in Yankee Stadium. Please, Pedro isn’t even qualified enough to clean Babe Ruth’s toilet after one of his hot dog and beer performances.
Celebrity Tweet of the moment: Sweeny Murti, Yankees Beat Writer
“Pedro: 43 pitches to seven batters.”
They’re getting to Pedro early, which is what the Yankees need to do. BRING OUT THE PHILLIES BULLPEN! Not like ours is that much better though, excluding the greatest postseason pitcher of all time, Mariano Rivera
9:01– Anyone else realize that Charlie Manual looks like Freddy Kruger’s dad?
9:05 – HUGE strikeout by Burnett on Howard with Utley on first, Rollins on second. Yankees just avoided a big inning there that could’ve hurt them. Score remains 1-0. My friend Jackson Brodie just brought up an awesome point. What killed the Yankees in Game 5 of the ALCS was Burnett giving up 4 runs on 4 hits and a walk in the 1st inning. It took a miraculous level comeback for the Yankees to take the lead in the 7th and that still wasn’t enough for the series-clinching win when the bullpen blew it. If Burnett keeps the Phills bats under control for the most part, the Yankees will have a chance to hit Pedro later on when he gets tired or the questionable bullpen.
9:11 – Molina walks against Pedro, the Yankees first BB of the Series. Once threw the lineup and no Yankee has reached second base yet.
9:15 – Jeter down looking, his 2nd K in as many at bats. I’m surprised how well Pedro is doing with all the history his daddy has against him.
9:22 – What product do you think Chase Utley uses to slick back his hair? McDonald’s french fry grease? Spit? Manure?
9:24 – Molina throwing out Jason Werth with his lead got too big at first is the game changing play the Yankees needed. Notice what happened afterwards. Two pitches later, Ibanez strikes out. One pitch after, Feliz flies out to left. Crowd gets excited. Not to mention Teixeira, A-Rod and Matsui coming up to face Pedro. Yankees NEED TO CAPITALIZE NOW!!!!!!
9:28 – WHAT DID I SAY! YANKS NEED TO CAPITALIZE!!! MARK TEIXERIA! FIRST PITCH! HOME RUN! 414 FEET TO CENTER! Game tied 1-1.
9:35 – Pedro allows two deep outs and K’s Hairston to get out of more trouble after Matsui waked. Tied at 1 after 4.
9:37 – If there is one debate the MLB postseason has caused this year, it’s whose overly promoted show will get canceled first, Lopez Tonight or the Wanda Sykes Show?
9:45 – We are 4 ½ innings through and we have had zero Kate Hudson shots. Is Fox feeling ok? They’re not acting like themselves. They live for the celebrity cameos. I’m starting to get worried.
9:50 – Pedro has 6 K’s so far yet Molina’s ground out was his first of the night.
9:57 – End of 5. Still knotted up at two. Pedro at 83 pitches after an 8 pitch inning. Bullpen is quiet for the Phillies. Pedro looks good for the 6th but maybe Manual should ask Grady Little what happens when you leave Pedro in postseason games too long at Yankee Stadium.
10:01 – Burnett gets through the heart of the order, Utley, Howard, and Werth in under 10 pitches. Who does Pedro have to face in the bottom of the 6th… the heart of the Yankees order.
Celebrity Tweet of the Moment: Sweeny Murti
“Between them Howard and ARod have struck out 9 times all ready this series. That’s niiiiine times.”
10:07 – Two Phillies up in the bullpen just sat down. Manual trusts Pedro after just striking out Teixeira.
10:08 – A-Rod down swinging for the second time in the game. Pedro has 8 K’s.
10:10: IT’S A THRILLA FROM GODZILLA!!! MATSUI WITH THE SOLO SHOT! Yankees take lead 2-1. I will be shocked to see Pedro come back for the 7th.
10:15 – Pedro just gave Manual the same line he gave Grady in the 8th in Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS before he blew it, “I’m fine”. Don’t know if Manual could allow this to happen with Pedro at 99 pitches but Chan Ho Park is starting to warm in the Phillies pen. I chalk this up as a win-win for the Yankees for whoever comes in.
10:19 – Burnett is showing his worth right now. He has gotten better every single inning as he gets Werth, Ibanez, and Feliz 1-2-3. He has set down 8 in a row. It looked as though Pedro was going back out for the bottom of the 7th.
10:23 – Pedro is out to pitch the 7th! His next pitch will be his 100th. Molina is batting third. It’ll be interesting to see if Posada pinch hits because the one and only Mariano Rivera is now warming up in the bullpen. Molina is not really needed because I think Burnett pitches the 8th till he gives up a base runner, then enter Sandman.
10:27 – Pedro battles Hairston in a long at bat and Hairston wins with a bloop single. The Yankees fastest man, Brett Gardner, is now pinch running. The move pays off as Melky Cabrera executes a hit and run with a single to right. Gardner is at third, Melky at first, and Jorge Posada is coming to the plate to pinch hit for Molina. Pedro’s “comeback” at Yankee Stadium looked good initially, but ends with him getting the loss. The lasting image, Pedro walking off the field smiling as Yankee fans boo him with a passion. I happen to say some not too kind words to the TV also.
Celebrity Tweet of the Moment: Bill Simmons, Writer for ESPN, the Sports Guy, a gift to the human race, unfortunately a gigantic Boston fan:
“Just landed in Boston + checked email. Top one said ‘Good God that’s Grady Little’s Music!’ Didn’t even have to check score.”
Celebrity Tweet of the Moment: Jason Stark
“Why Park (Park relieved Pedro)? Posada 0-7 against him. That would be why.
10:36 – Stark’s tweet proves to be wrong… Posada singles to center and scores Gardner. 3-1 Yankees.
10:39 – Park “strikes out” Jeter when he bunts foul with two strikes. One out in the bottom of the 7th. Manual takes out Park for Scott Eyre.
10:43 – Another umpiring error in this postseason! With one out, Damon lines a ball to Howard at first that takes a slight bounce, but Howard says he caught it. Throws to second where Jimmy Rollins tags Posada and up calls it a double play. They completely blew the call, thought it was a blink of the eye thing. Instead of the top of the 8th, it should be one out in the bottom of the 7th with the bases loaded for Teixeira. Yankees lost a chance to seal this game even further with Rivera now in the game for a six out save.
10:51 – Also, Charlie Manual looks like Jigsaw from the Saw movies.
10:52 – Burnett’s final line: 7 IP, 1 ER, 4 H, 2 BB (1 INT BB), 9 K’s. Great performance.
10:57 – Rare walk by Mariano to Rollins, Shane Victorino singles to right. First and second with one out Utley at bat as the game leading run. If Phillies are going to come back, this is the time with the right guys at bat.
10:59 – You know how I just said Phillies need to capitalize here? Well rather than do that, Utley grounds to second for an inning ending double play. Mariano will face Howard, Werth, and Ibanez in the 9th. Coming to bat for the Yankees: Teixeira, A-Rod, Matsui.
11:02 – Another umpiring mistake. This one is HUGE and at first again! In looking at the replay, Utley beat out the throw and should have been safe, meaning first and third with two outs for Howard. Phillies got a break, now Yankees got one. “The MLB Postseason Umpires, equally making mistakes for all teams alike!”
11:04 – Ryan Madson comes in for the Phills and his first pitch nails Teixeira on the leg. Now he strikes out A-Rod. A-Rod is now 0-8 with 6K’s in the World Series.
11:13 – Madson strikes out Matsui, Cano singles to right, Gardner strikes out. To the top of the ninth we go!
11:18 – Howard strikes out for the forth time TONIGHT! Give him a Golden Sombrero. Yankees are now two outs away from tying the series.
11:20 – Werth hits a week liner to Cano. One out away.
11:22 – Ibanez continues the game with a double to deep left center. Matt Stairs, now the tying run for the Phillies, is at the plate.
11:24 – Mariano strikes out Stairs. Ballgame over. Yankees win. The World Series is tied at 1-1. We’re going to Philadelphia.
Celebrity Tweet of the Moment: Sweeny Murti
“Beating Broxton is one thing. Beating Rivera is another. Tied 1-1 heading to Philly. Great series on the way.”
I will be back Saturday night for game 3. If you read all of this, you’re a trooper. But I love baseball and I love a good World Series, which is exactly what this series looks to be turning in to.