Rapid Reaction: Tigers 8, Yankees 1
October, 18, 2012
By Andrew Marchand | ESPNNewYork.com
Recap | Box score | Photos
WHAT IT MEANS: The Yankees' season is over. It ends in utter embarrassment. Forget about winning a game in this series, they never held a lead in the ALCS.
There figures to be major changes, major headlines and, you would think, a major roster reconstruction. It will start with a guy who didn't even start Game 4, Alex Rodriguez.
NO OFFENSE: The offense was epically bad. The capper came in Game 4 when the Yankees waited until the sixth to finally get a hit off Max Scherzer. They struck out 12 times.
Pick who you want to blame, from Robinson Cano to Curtis Granderson to Nick Swisher to Rodriguez. The Yankees averaged less than two runs per game in the entire playoffs. Hard to win that way.
HERE COMES A-ROD:In the sixth, with a run in, two men on and two out, Joe Girardi called on A-Rod to pinch-hit for Raul Ibanez against lefty Drew Smyly. Rodriguez took a long time to get ready for the at-bat. After he finally made his way to the plate, he weakly flied out to center.
Facing lefty Phil Coke in the ninth, Rodriguez, in perhaps his final at-bat as a Yankee, grounded out to short to make the second out of the inning.
EVEN CC STUNK: CC Sabathia's line in his final start of the year: 3 2/3 innings, six runs (five earned) on 11 hits, three strikeouts and two walks. Sabathia was tremendous in his previous two postseason starts. Today, not so much.
SHAKY START: Using a fastball that loitered in the 90-91 mph range, Sabathia allowed a run in the first inning on three hits, one an infield single that A-Rod's replacement, Eric Chavez, played poorly, the other two line shots from Prince Fielder and Delmon Young. Young's single knocked in his sixth run of the ALCS, one more than the entire Yankees team had scored in the previous three games combined.
NO SUPPORT: After the first, Sabathia continued to get in trouble, but it wasn't all his doing. In the second, he left two men on base. In the third, the Yankees could not play defense. With one out, Fielder hit a ball right at Mark Teixeira, who could not make the play and it was ruled a hit.
After a walk and a Jhonny Peralta fly ball to the wall, Sabathia appeared as if he may have escaped trouble again. Instead, an Andy Dirks bouncer bounded off Teixeira's glove. Cano fielded the ball, but Sabathia hadn't covered first. It was ruled an error on Teixeira.
Next, Avisail Garcia hit a ball up the middle and Eduardo Nunez threw a dart --- straight into the ground. It was late and could have been an error if Teixeira hadn't corralled it. Sabathia escaped the inning by only allowing the run so the Yankees, conceivably, were still in the game.
CRUSHED: The Tigers chased Sabathia in the fourth as Miguel Cabrera and Peralta each hit two-run homers. Sabathia exited with two outs in the fourth.
AT LEAST THEY WEREN'T NO-HIT: The Yankees were hitless for the first five innings. Down 6-0, Nunez started the sixth with a triple. Swisher drove him in with a double.
ON DECK: We will have you covered. Wallace Matthews and I will have any news out of the postgame. We will have an Ian O'Connor column on how awfully this season ended. Wally will also have a column tonight. I will chime in with the 10 issues facing the Yankees. Look for that tomorrow. We will also have the "Take 'Em or Trash 'Em" series so you can have your say on who should stay and who should go.
QUESTION OF THE SEASON: What changes should the Yankees make?