I really wanted the Yankees to sweep this series. I wanted the Yankees to tramp the dirt down, put the nail in the coffin, and destroy the Red Sox's season. A.J. Burnett did his part in the first game to smash the Sox. But alas, thanks to Joe Girardi and Scott Proctor, Boston gets to live again, with a huge victory that could be a momentum-changer to their season. If the Yanks face the Red Sox in the ALCS and lose, I will rue tonight even more.
I subscribe to the Conan the Barbarian belief that what is best in life is to crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women. But now I am the one doing the lamenting!
I blame Joe Girardi for making several critical mistakes that helped cost the Bombers the game:
* The first was keeping Ivan Nova in for too long when the Sox were clearly getting to him. Nova should have been pulled by the sixth, not in the seventh when the damage was done, with the game tied.
* The second was Girardi refusing to use most of his bench to get a big hit to win the game. Leaving Austin Romine in to face Jonathan Papelbon with the bases loaded in the ninth inning was inexcusable. Romine has all of 15 at-bats in the majors, with exactly three hits, and you leave him in there to face Papelbon? Joe could have used Russell Martin, Alex Rodriguez, or Derek Jeter instead in that spot. Then he let Romine bat again with runners on base, only to have his strike out. Good grief.
Not pinch-hitting for Greg Golson with Andruw Jones made no sense, either. Or letting Eduardo Nunez go 0-for-6, bat in extra innings with Derek Jeter in the house. Why Girardi let the kids get so many at-bats when there were several people on the bench who could have ended the game with one swing makes no sense. What good did it do to give the veterans "rest" when if one of them had gotten to hit in the ninth, or even the tenth, the Yanks would have been resting on the plane much earlier, after most likely winning the game. Who needs the stars refreshed for Tampa, anyway? Tonight was the night to play them.
* And the third was going to Scott Proctor (yeah, I know Girardi was out of the game then, but I'm sure he helped make the decision) in the 14th. Why would you rely on a guy who is best known for having his arm blown out, and setting his equipment on fire, for anything? Proctor is horrible. He shouldn't even be on this team. (BTW, funny how when Brian Cashman was patting himself on the back the other day for all the moves he made this year, he didn't talk about picking up Proctor. Gee, I wonder why.) As soon as I saw that Proctor in, I knew the Yankees would lose. Thanks for nothing, Scottie.
One other note on Proctor. The media's revisionist history on him amuses me. Back when St. Joe Torre was blowing out his arm as a Yankee, it was bloggers like yours truly who pointed out how Joe ruined so many arms. The media mostly ignored the issue. It really wasn't until the whole Joba Rules thing that the press finally started to acknowledge that Joe was a bullpen-killer.
Anyhow, I was hoping to be jubilant over the Yanks sweeping the series, but I am disgusted that the Bombers let the BoSox escape with a win. Yikes!