Saturday, June 15, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Angels 5, Yankees 2
By Wallace Matthews
ANAHEIM -- This Yankee season is turning into one long toothache, a dull throbbing pain that never seems to subside. First, the good news -- they snapped their scoreless streak at 21 1/3 innings, one that began with the final 17 2/3 of Thursday's loss to the Oakland Athletics. The bad news? They're working on another one, 5 1/3 and counting. And with Andy Pettitte having an off night, they really had no shot in this one.
What it means: That the Yankees have now lost four straight, five of their past seven. They don't just desperately need a win. They desperately need a hit.
In a nutshell: Yankees down by two, runners on first and second, none out, and Robinson Cano, Vernon Wells and pinch hitter Ichiro Suzuki -- $42.5 million worth of ballplayers -- coming up. Ideal situation. Agonizing result. Cano swings at ball four and pops out to left. Wells flies out to short right (a nice running catch by Josh Hamilton). And Ichiro fouls out to left. No inning better sums up the current state of the Yankees offense than that one.
Raggedy Andy: Fresh off a superior outing against the Mariners in Seattle last Saturday, Pettitte was hit hard from the start of the game, although he was able to contain the damage to a single run in four different innings. Still, with the Yankees offense sputtering, four runs looks as imposing as 40 these days and when Pettitte -- who went seven innings and allowed a season-high 11 hits -- surrendered a first-inning run on three hits, including Howie Kendrick's RBI double, it felt as if he had taken his team out of the game.
Off the schneid: The Yankees had not scored between Cano's two-run HR with one out in the first inning of Thursday's game in Oakland, and the fourth inning Friday -- a stretch of 21 1/3 innings. That is, until David Adams, who had not started since last Saturday and was in an 0-for-13 spiral, singled with the bases loaded, driving in two runs and giving the Yankees a 2-1 lead.
Kick save: And a beauty by Austin Romine, who blocked the plate with his left leg and got the tag down on Albert Pujols trying to score from second on Mark Trumbo's single in the sixth. Romine saved a crucial run for the Yankees, but couldn't do anything when Chris Iannetta singled up the middle three batters later to drive in Trumbo and give the Angels back the lead, 3-2.
No, after you ...: Adams and Reid Brignac performed an Alphonse and Gaston routine on Peter Bourjos' infield fly leading off the seventh, gesturing to one another and then both watching helplessly as the ball dropped between them for a single. If you weren't a Yankees fan, it was comical. Actually, even if you were. But it wasn't funny when Bourjos came around to score on Trumbo's RBI single to increase the Halos' lead to 4-2.
Overgeeked?:Brett Gardner showed some terrific heads-up baserunning in the fifth, taking second on Jayson Nix's fly out to deep center. Then, he made a baserunning blunder, trying to go to third on Mark Teixeira's grounder to short. He was easily thrown out, taking the Yankees out of a potential scoring chance.
Boots Call:Chris Bootcheck, the newest Yankee reliever, got the call to relieve Pettitte in the eighth, and his Yankee debut did not go well. Although he was spared one run when Adams gunned down Alberto Callaspo at the plate (a close call that went the Yankees' way courtesy of HP ump Manny Gonzalez), Bootcheck gave up two walks and two hits, including Mike Trout's RBI single that made it 5-2 Angels.
What's next: Game 2 of this three-game series, David Phelps (4-3, 3.90) vs. RHP Tommy Hanson (3-2, 4.12), first pitch at 7:15 p.m. ET.