Yankees-Mets: Joe Girardi’s Stupidity Pays Off As Yanks Sweep Mets

June 28, 2009   ·     ·   Jump to comments
Article Source: Bleacher Report - New York Yankees

With Johnny Damon up with two on and one out in the ninth, I called my friend Brad.

“He better get on or they’re gonna walk Jeter and then Rivera will have to bat,” I told my fellow Yankee fanatic.

Inexplicably, Manager Joe Girardi failed to use a double switch when Mariano Rivera entered the game in the eighth inning, meaning he would have to bat during a crucial situation in a one-run game with the New York Mets.

Girardi should have inserted Rivera into Robinson Cano’s No. 5 spot in the order, because Cano made the last out in the seventh, and then replaced Cano at second base with Ramiro Pena or Cody Ransom, both of which were available on the bench.

Instead, Girardi simply replaced Brian Bruney with Rivera in the No. 2 spot in the lineup, meaning Mo was due up sixth in the eighth inning, with the Yanks needing an insurance run to feel better about their chances.

More amazing, though, was what Mets Manager Jerry Manuel did when Derek Jeter stepped to the plate with two on and two out and Rivera on deck.  He actually had Francisco Rodriguez throw three pitches, one for a strike, to Jeter, who, incredibly, didn’t swing.

With the count at 2-1, Manuel finally wised up and had K-Rod intentionally walk the captain to get to Mo.

Then, the most ridiculous thing happened.  Rodriguez walked his counterpart with the bases loaded to force in the Yanks’ fourth run of the game.

Girardi’s idiocy paid off and the Bombers went on to complete the Subway Series sweep by a score of 4-2.

Here are the grades from Sunday’s game at Citi Field.


Joe Girardi, Manager: (D+) In addition to the bonehead non-double switch, the skipper also made a mistake when he failed to pinch run for Jorge Posada after the catcher led off the ninth with a bloop single to center. 

As I said, that insurance run was important, and so Girardi could have replaced the slow-footed Posada on the base paths with Pena or Ransom.

The manager did, however, do a pretty good job with his bullpen.  I thought he could’ve let starter Chien-Ming Wang finish the sixth, being that he had only thrown 85 pitches, but the combination of Phil Coke, Phil Hughes, Bruney, and Rivera pitched 3.2 scoreless innings to close it out.


Derek Jeter, SS: (A) The captain was 1-for-2 with a double, three walks, and a run scored.  He also made a great pick of Alex Rodriguez’s throw to second on Argenis Reyes’s bunt attempt in the seventh.  If that ball goes throw to center field, it’s first and second with no one out.


Nick Swisher, RF: (B-) Swisher walked and scored, but his 0-for-2 drops his average to .237.  Damon and Jeter need to get healthy at the same time, so they can move Swisher out of the two hole.


Mark Teixeira, 1B: (B+) Teixeira was 1-for-4 and left five men on base, but his two-run double in the first was the big blow in this game.


Alex Rodriguez, 3B: (A) A-Rod was 1-for-1 with three walks and made an incredible, albeit, risky play on Reyes’s bunt in the seventh.


Robinson Cano, 2B: (F) Cano was 0-for-4, left an astounding nine men on base, hit into two double plays (should’ve been three if not for Daniel Murphy dropping a ball at first), and was caught stealing.  But Girardi felt it was very important to keep him in the game in the eighth.


Jorge Posada, C: (A) Posada was 1-for-3 with a sac fly.


Melky Cabrera, LF-RF: (D+) Cabrera was 0-for-4 with a stolen base and a run scored.


Brett Gardner, CF: (B) Gardner was 0-for-2 with two walks to keep his average at a solid .289.  I don’t understand why he isn’t leading off when Damon or Jeter are out of the lineup.


Johnny Damon, PH-LF: (INC) Damon didn’t start because he was suffering from flu symptoms, but he was well enough to enter as a pinch hitter for the pitcher and went 0-for-2.


Hideki Matsui, PH: (INC) Not sure why Girardi had the lefty Matsui pinch hit against the lefty Pedro Feliciano in the eighth.  Godzilla grounded out to the pitcher to drop his average to .246.


Chien-Ming Wang, SP: (C+) Wang finally got his first win of the year in his longest outing of the year, going 5.1 innings, while giving up just two runs on four hits and three walks.  He struck out three.  That’s three straight solid starts for Wang, who is improving little by little each time out.


Phil Coke, RP: (B+) Coke struck out Fernando Martinez in the sixth.


Phil Hughes, RP: (A-) Hughes walked one and struck out one in 1.1 innings of work.


Brian Bruney, RP: (C+) Another scoreless eighth without Joba Chamberlain.


Mariano Rivera, RP: (A) Mo picked up his 500th save (only the 110th of the four-out variety) and his first career RBI.


Yankees Overall Grade: (B) Just four hits but they made them count, while Wang and the bullpen held up their end of the bargain.  That’s five straight wins to finish off what started out as a horrendous interleague road trip.  The Yanks now head home just three games back of the Boston Red Sox for first place in the AL East.


Jordan Schwartz is Bleacher Report’s New York Yankees Community Leader. His book “Memoirs of the Unaccomplished Man” is available at amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, and authorhouse.com.

Jordan can be reached at jordanschwartz2003@yahoo.com

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