8/7/14, "Despite Setbacks, Yankees Advance,
" NY Times, Tyler Kepner
a two-time most valuable player with two on
, no outs and a one-run lead
in the ninth inning Thursday, David Robertson meant to place his pitch
low and away. But as he threw it, Robertson said, he simply cut loose.
The ball ended up over the middle of the plate.
Miguel Cabrera swung, and Robertson got a break: a ground-ball double play. One pop-up later, the Yankees had won the game, 1-0
, and taken three of four in the Bronx against the imposing Detroit Tigers
was just trying to be smart,” Robertson said. “I didn’t exactly throw
the pitch where I wanted to, but the outcome was exactly what I wanted.”...
in spite of everything, this Yankees season can work out the same way....
Yankees did not expect to have four injured starting pitchers and have
nobody in the top 30 in the majors in on-base plus slugging percentage
But if the outcome is a trip to the playoffs — and the chance to make a
deep run if things align as they did this week — it could still be a
memorable season, after all.
gives us a lot of confidence in that we can beat anybody,” catcher
Francisco Cervelli said. “We’re still there. We’re going to compete, and
we want to be in the playoffs.”
Yankees have not been more games above .500 this season than they are
now, at 60-54. It is an unlikely perch, given that they had to beat two
Cy Young Award winners, Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander, as well as
Rick Porcello, a 13-game winner this season, in the Tigers series to get
Yankees’ starters in their victories against Detroit were Brandon
McCarthy, Chris Capuano and Shane Greene. McCarthy started the season
with Arizona, Capuano with Boston and Greene with Class AAA
Thursday, the Yankees’ second, fifth and sixth hitters were all
newcomers: third baseman Martin Prado, first baseman Chase Headley and
shortstop Stephen Drew. Prado made some nifty plays in the field,
Headley singled and Drew doubled in the game’s only run.
makes three starters and three everyday players, none having played for
the Yankees before July (except for a third of an inning by Greene in
April), all helping take a series from the A.L.’s glamour team.
you went back to the wintertime and said, ‘You’ll be able to get a
Prado, that type of guy, a Headley, and you’re going to take a shot on
Stephen Drew and move him to second base,’ I wouldn’t have expected any
of that,” General Manager Brian Cashman said. “It’s just the way a major
league season twists and turns.”
never expect anything,” Cashman said. “You have no idea where your
conversations are going to take you. You really engage everybody
possible, including Tampa on David Price and Boston on Jon Lester. But
you have no idea what ones are going to fit and what will lead you
where. I just knew it was going to be hard.”
added: “We wound up getting McCarthy — eventually — but it took us two
months. I had offers on the table they were rejecting. It took a long
time. So I was not optimistic entering July because it took me so long
to get a player who, at the time, was 2-10. It really dragged on.”
said he wanted Capuano when Boston released him in June. But Masahiro
Tanaka was healthy then, and C. C. Sabathia seemed to be recovering from
his knee problem.
Capuano expected a better opportunity with the lowly Colorado Rockies, who never called him up from the minors.
had an out in his contract, and I engaged Dan O’Dowd,” Cashman said,
referring to the Rockies’ general manager. “I said, ‘If you’re not going
to call him up, trade him to me.’ So I bought him.”
Tigers and the Oakland Athletics stand out as the favorites to play for
the A.L. pennant in October. Detroit traded for Price, and Oakland
traded for Lester after acquiring another All-Star starter, Jeff
Samardzija, in early July.
we hear all the time about how the best rotations rule October, only to
forget what actually happens
. Last year’s Cy Young Award winners,
Scherzer and the Los Angeles Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw, combined to make
four starts in the league championship series. Their teams lost all four
games. Verlander allowed one run in 23 innings last postseason — yet
the Tigers somehow lost two of his three starts....
But the Yankees showed this week that if they
catch a team at the right time, even as they stand right now, they have a
though, was not looking too far ahead. As he headed for Manager Joe
Girardi’s office late Thursday afternoon, he had more immediate
concerns, like making sure Esmil Rogers was cleared to start Friday.
could make things interesting,” Cashman said. “But we’ll see. We’ve got
a lot of baseball left. We’re still trying to figure this thing out on a