Friday, June 14, 2013

31 Innings

Yanks played 18. We played 13.

I couldn't believe it when I came back to my car after working a two-hour shift, having started that shift in the 9th, that Sterling was still blabbing. Turns out it was the 15th. Then after a 45-minute drive home, which was 15 minutes longer because I stopped at the store to get ingredients for a Mexi-feast, AND had to go to a different store since the first one was out of avocados, I got to listen to the last inning in the kitchen as I made the guac. Got to hear Mo give up the winning run. Awesome. I knew right then our result would be gravy, unless...maybe...we lost in similar fashion.

And we kinda did! But whatever, at least we had a nice comeback, and their winning hit was a bloop. Not a crushing loss. And also, it puts the O's into a second-place tie with the Yanks. That's what you get for rooting against us, Suzyn!


Okay, I wasn't gonna say anything, even after Don did his usual, saying the O's were "walking off" just as the camera showed the Red Sox pitcher WALKING OFF, with the man who coined the phrase, Dennis Eckersley, sitting next to him. But then Tom Caron rubbed it in my face, by saying on the post-game, "...and it sends them walking off in celebration," again while we watched the Orioles neither "walking" nor headed "off," followed by a shot of the Red Sox pitcher walking off. Here's what I don't get about that: If you happen to think "walk-off" refers to the walking off the field by the victors post-celebration, then why wouldn't you call every game a walk-off? The winners always celebrate on the field and then walk off it. I feel like Tom's brain is saying to him "These words don't make sense in this situation. But it's what everyone says. So I'll assume no one will call me out on speaking complete nonsense." Eck! We need you! Tell everyone what you meant by this term, since the world forgot. Thank you. How could it not be killing him as much as it's killing me? Well, "killing" in loose terms.

Bonus post-warning thing: It's another anti-Don thing. In the previous night's game, there was a ball hit off Aceves that bounced in front of the plate, then bounced up and over the first baseman into the outfield. On this play, you have to note how it's tough luck for the pitcher, who essentially induced a groundout, only to have the ball go over the guy's head for a cheap single. Instead, Don's call was "fair ball!" as if it were a regular "down the line" hit. Bradford said nothing. We got no replay. Don left viewers thinking it was a regular hit when it was an oddity that needed attention called to it.

Oh, and NESN, terrible job on the sometimes-used "DUE UP" graphic at the end of an inning that shows the hitters' faces, since it means we don't see the score. Or the hits/errors/inning. Can't there be room for both?

PlayStation: It's so funny (and awesome) when Eckersley brings up his own games, because, as I've said before, he's accurate to about 96%, whereas most other ex-jocks are at about 23%. Tonight, he brought up a game in the last month of '95, where Rickey hit a dong, and he threw three innings, with Donnie Baseball (Yankee fans will often say "Donnie Ballgame"--when they do, remember to punch them in the face) fouling off a bunch of pitches, leading Eck to "suck" (his words, quickly changed to "stunk," too late) for the rest of the season. Here's the game. I think he might have said he threw the 9th, 10th, and 11th. It was actually 8th through 10th, but besides that , everything else checks out. He gave up 2 runs in four of his next five appearances, with his ERA going up more than a full point in that last month. The San Jose Mercury (9/5/95) wrote "Eckersley ended the game with a classic confrontation with Mattingly, who fouled off five pitches [....]" Nice job, Eck! On the memory, and beating the Yankees.

B-Ref notes a 10-pitch AB for Mattingly.

Don also said on one late-inning play that a Baltimore batter had hit one "to the deepest parts of Camden Yards". He made it sound very scary, as if the game could have been lost. Ellsbury was not even close to the warning track when he caught the fly.
O's actually half game ahead of Yanks. Even better! I edged that up in original post.

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Location: Rhode Island, United States