Just Throw Strikes

May 24, 2011 – 12:29 pm

Toronto 7, NYY 3. You pretty much had a feeling this wasn’t going to be the Yankees night after the first inning. Jose Bautista took Bartolo Colon yard, which isn’t all that big of a deal as Bautista is no doubt the best hitter in the league these days, but then the next two batters also got solid line drive singles. Colon escaped giving up just the one run, but then in the bottom half of the inning, Carlos Villanueva struck out the side without even breaking a sweat, and you kinda knew then it was going to be a long night. For whatever reasons, the Yankees never do well against pitchers they haven’t seen before, and they just continued that long proud tradition against Villanueva.

Colon did manage to re-group after the first and actually got through the next four innings giving up just one hit and no runs. But then along came the weird sixth inning. Thanks to Joe Girardi’s love affair with the intentional walk, the Jays loaded the bases with nothing more than a double. Now given the way Colon has pitched all year, those walks probably weren’t all that bad of a decision. But where Girardi blew it was two batters later — after Aaron Hill had singled to make it a 2-1 game,  Colon then walked Eric Thames on four straight pitches, none of which was even close to the plate. At that point it’s clear that Colon has totally lost his command, the game is still very winnable at only 3-1, so you have to yank Colon right then and there and bring in someone else. Alas, Girardi stuck with Colon, and J.P. Arencibia doubled in three runs on the very first pitch, and that was the ballgame.  With the Yankee offense still struggling, you can pretty much take a 7-1 lead in the sixth to the bank.  Which the Jays did.

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