And That Happened: ALCS

Angels 7, Yankees 6: Behold the power of the Rally Monkey. Or behold the the suckiness that is A.J. Burnett when he doesn’t have his best stuff. Or behold the presence of mad chance that allowed the Angels to win despite the best efforts of Mike Scioscia. Whatever the case, each team did its best to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, with the Yankees just barely edging the Angels in that department.

Game 6 in New York. Giant rain is in the forecast. Thankfully we have approximately 19 days until Game 1 of the World Series, so we should be OK. Probably.

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Comments

  1. lar said...

    YankeesfanLen:

    Yankees in 6, 12:17 AM Monday 10/26.
    Put Robertson in at some point, and send Joba to KC.

    Which time zone?

  2. Jack Marshall said...

    I can’t recall a tactic by a good manager I have hated more than walking A-Rod in the 9th. Chicken-####, cowardly, and not even a good percentage move. I was rooting for the Yankees to tie the game on general principles.

  3. Rob² said...

    Maybe Scioscia was trying to get the upper-hand because he knew that Girardi would pinch-run for ARod.  Once the game went to extra innings, the Angels would have a strategic advantage with Kendrick ready to pinch-hit, and ARod wearing his street clothes.

  4. Kevin S. said...

    If he was so friggin’ terrified of Fuentes pitching to A-Rod, why not leave Weaver in?  It’s not like the dude’s ever gone multiple innings before, or anything…

    And what does Scioscia do if Damon’s ball isn’t right at Morales?  Nowhere to put A-Rod, and now he’s the go-ahead run.  A lot of faith in a guy to get out two really good hitters that you have no faith in to get out a great one.  That entire game was a giant managerfail from both sides.

  5. Mode:Theif and Lair said...

    YfL, while I agree that Joba shouldn’t be where he is on the playoff depth chart, I hope you are being facetious when indicating the Yankees should get rid of him.

    There is a long list of pitchers that struggled early in their career and came back to be great.  That list includes this years AL Cy Young award winner.  And while there is no guarantee that Joba will turn into the next Sabathia (just kidding, I was alluding to Mr. Greinke).  It’s a bit early to give up on him.

  6. Daniel said...

    Alright, let me address each of those points from CtB:

    1. Their career OPS against RHP is virtually identical, but Izturis has been the better fielder.  Also, Scioscia has been platooning them for the last 3 months and it’s worked out just fine.  The reason why Howie’s 4 for 11?  He’s faced almost exclusively left handers.

    2. I agree that it was odd to let Lackey face Damon, but it’s also possible that Oliver wasn’t ready yet (remember Lackey was cruising before this inning).  So Lackey got to face one more guy, even though it wasn’t ideal.  But while 2 for 3 is hardly a sample size, Teixeira is a 1.015 OPS against Lackey in 56 PA’s.  Not MUCH better, but certainly more of a track record.  Teixeira is also a worse hitter from the right side.  So why was that a bad decision to bring Oliver in there?

    3. The bunts were a bit strange, although with the way Figgins has been hitting (2 for like 35 in the postseason), I don’t blame him.  Mathis bunt was with no outs, not two as the piece says.

    4. Who was Scioscia supposed to bring in in the ninth?  He’s going to pitch Weaver in game 7, so he’s not going to leave him out there for any extended time.  Jepsen and Oliver had already been used.  Matt Palmer?  Bulger (who’s been pretty bad this series)?  There’s a lefty, switch, righty, and two lefties coming up.  A left-hander was the way to go, if only for the platoon advantage.  He was going to walk A-Rod even if Clemens was on the mound.

    Other than the bunts, which weren’t ideal, I can’t argue with any of Scioscia’s decisions.  I don’t get the criticism.

  7. DonCoburleone said...

    This game means nothing… Sure I like that there is at least some baseball to watch between now and 2013 when the World Series starts, but make no mistake this series is over.  Its not suddenly going to warm up in New York so that the Angels can play like the Angels are capable of.  Besides the Yankees are the better team and playing at home, series over.

  8. Daniel said...

    As for Scioscia walking A-Rod, have any of you been paying attention to A-Rod this series?  He homered off Fuentes, he homered off Weaver (both things he had done in the past, as well).  Teammates were talking like the guy couldn’t miss a ball if he tried, and it certainly looked that way.  His SLG for the postseason is about 1.000, meaning a walk accomplishes the same thing as letting him hit, except without the risk of extra bases.

    I am generally not a fan of the intentional walk, but I had no problem with this one.  Scioscia did the same thing with Fuentes in game 3 and it worked out just fine (in that case, A-Rod was the WINNING run).

  9. Daniel said...

    Wow, Don, thanks for the brilliant analysis.  I’ll respectfully disagree that the series is over.  The Angels have historically hit Pettitte well, Saunders pitched very well in Yankee Stadium in game 2, so I like the Angels’ chances in game 6.

    Game 7 is a different matter, but we’ll address that when we come to it.  The Angels chances are definitely much better than 0.

  10. Mode:Theif and Lair said...

    He may have said that Craig, but I was there when he said it in 1996.  But of course, that team was only up 2-0.

    /Wink back atcha

  11. Kevin S. said...

    Daniel, I’m under the presumption that since Weaver came into the game, Kazmir is getting the ball on full rest in Game 7.

  12. Nate said...

    Is this where I chime in about the crappy late start time for Game 6? If rain is looming, why not try and get it in early? I’ll stop making sense now.

  13. Simon DelMonte said...

    In Philly, I c can hear the masses hoping for a long rain delay, an ineffective Pettitte, and a game seven that would prevent CC from starting game one of the WS.  And a Yankees win in game seven.

    Because an Angels team that does come back will be on fire and hard to beat.

    Not that I see it happening.

  14. Wooden U. Lykteneau said...

    Extra innings in Game 7 would also be nice. Rivera having to pitch from say, the 12th to 15th, even better.

  15. Levi Stahl said...

    I was listening to the Angels broadcast online, and when A-Rod came up they pointed out that he’d homered off Fuentes before and had been intentionally walked at some point earlier. My wife and I quickly agreed that there was no way they’d be crazy enough to walk him here and put the go-ahead run on base . . .

    Then, to add drama to the already wild inning, the radio guys initially called the foul chopper to Figgins as a fair ball—“Angels win!”

  16. Levi Stahl said...

    Oh, and after we spent half an hour on the edge of our seats during the Angels rally and that 9th, my wife said, “I thought I didn’t care about any of the teams that were left . . . maybe I was wrong?”

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