Maybe A.J. Burnett was overheating in the 91-degree weather. Maybe he ate some iffy cream pie before the game. Maybe he couldn’t get on the same page as his catcher. Or maybe he was just plain bad.
Whatever the problem, A.J. had a nationally televised meltdown at Fenway, and it led to the Yankees’ 14-1 drubbing by the Red Sox. His pitches were up in the zone. His stuff wasn’t dipping and diving. His body language was crappy. In the fifth, after he teed one up for Ortiz to put Boston ahead 8-0, he was captured by the Fox cameras muttering to himself, “Why? Why did you do that?” I’ll tell you why, honey. You sucked today and we all saw it.
But the Yankees wouldn’t be 6.5 games up in the division if it weren’t for A.J., who’s been superb for the most part. So I forgive him for having a lousy outing. I just hope he doesn’t take it too hard. I hear he has a tendency to play the brooding hero.
Well? They kind of look alike.
OK. No, they don’t. Not like these two.
Moving right along…..While A.J. certainly set the losing tone today, he had plenty of company. Aceves gave up three runs and hasn’t been effective for awhile now. Robertson has the ability to strike people out, but he allowed two runs. Cano made a base running blunder. (Memo to Yankees: Stop trying to stretch singles into doubles at Fenway!) Hinske is ill equipped to handle left field duties. And the Yankees were 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position. Oh, and we had no bench – not when Molina was pressed into service at third base.
Aside from Nick Swisher’s offense, the game was enough to make any Yankee tear out his hair.
But I expected it. This rivalry is all about insanely long games and extremely unlikely results. I don’t even want to speculate about CC versus Beckett on Sunday night, because I’m sure I’ll be wrong. All I know is that we’ll still be in first place when it’s over.