Sunday, April 23, 2006

April 23 vs Baltimore W 7-1

Unfortunately, I could only catch the first four innings of the game today. I was actually in the city seeing the play The Cain Mutiny. It was one hell of a play, but let's talk baseball.

Randy Johnson quelled all doubts about his injury status. Besides the one start against Toronto, Johnson has allowed only six runs in 28 innings, striking out 21 while walking just one. His ERA in those other four starts is 1.92. He's acting like the ace he is.

I witnessed two terrible missteps by Torre in the 3rd inning tonight. Derek Jeter led off the inning with a walk. With Gary Sheffield batting, Jeter was caught stealing by Bruce Chen's pickoff move. Gary Sheffield then proceded to hit a single. Instead of Jeter being on 2nd and Sheffield on 1st with Arod batting, only Sheffield was on first. Sheffield was then thrown out by Ramon Hernandez trying to steal 2nd. Arod, now batting with the bases empty, was able to reach on Melvin Mora's error. Instead of the bases being loaded for Jason Giambi, only Alex Rodriguez scored on Giambi's home run.

Overmanaging cost us 2 runs. Look, base stealing is not always a bad strategy in baseball. A successful steal is never a bad thing. That said, an out on the basepaths is always a bad thing. Although Jeter likely did attempt to steal without a direct order from the bench, Joe Torre does give him the green light in almost all situations. When you have guys who hit 34, 48, and 32 home runs last season sitting behind you, stealing is not that neccessary. A home run is indiscriminate; it cares not whether you are on 1st, 2nd, or 3rd. You still score.

The Big Unit was on fire so the move didn't cost us, but in a different context those two runs could have been very big. We lost 6-5 Friday night. 2 more runs and we win.

Amount remaining on Joe Torre's contract: 12,535,185 dollars