So, last night we lost a heck of a fight in 14 innings. Ozzie said post-game that he couldn’t tell if they played well or if they played badly. In reality, there was probably a little bit of both. There were some flashes of utter brilliance, followed by the same old story of failure to execute. And, there was just some plain old bad luck. And, I think we all feel a little bit like Matt Thornton (see left). Last night and this morning.
The Good: Mark Teahen improbably tied the game in the bottom of the 9th with his first pinch hit home run (a 3 run bomb). And, then we tied it up in the bottom of the 10th on a wild pitch. And, then AJ Pierzynski (riding a bit of a hot streak himself) tied it up again in the bottom of the 11th with a solo HR. We were gritty and scrappy and that was fun to see.
The Bad: We had 2 men on with 1 man out in the first two innings and couldn’t score any of them. We had the bases loaded with one out and couldn’t get anyone across the plate. We had a very-poorly timed error in the top of the 14th inning that was the catalyst for the winning runs. We are still the guinea pig for everyone else’s running game. We used everyone on our bench and, not to mention, our entire bullpen did a few days worth of work and they’re all going to be exhausted today. Not a great thing on the first day back from an off-day. In fact, had we not lost it in the 14th, Phil Humber would have been our next reliever – making a reliever out of one of our 6 starters for the second time this year.
The Bad Luck: There was a close call that went our way when it didn’t really matter (but have you EVER seen Paul Konerko confront an umpire before? I think we probably won that call on the basis of Paulie being pissed off for the first time in recorded history.), there was a close call that didn’t go our way when it really mattered, and – for the first time in a long time- Adam Dunn hit a 2-run homer that would have completely changed the landscape of the game and it was robbed from over the outfield fence.
In conclusion: UGH. It was the battle of the blown saves, and we came out on top. Or bottom. Or, you know, on the losing end.
And, I’m trying not to think about the last time we did the 14-inning loss. It was a month ago in Toronto and Edwin Jackson got the loss (though, he certainly pitched better last night) and then Johnny Danks was up the next day and we got our read-ends whipped soundly by the Blue Jays (14-3, was it?).
I worry for our interleague streak right now. And, of course, the continuing quest for .500.
Edited early afternoon to add:
So, my pet theory that Johnny Danks refuses to pitch unless Brent Lillibridge is in the outfield continues to be substantiated. In Danks’ last three starts (ie: his first three wins of the season), Brent has made a highlight-worthy, run-saving catch. The CF layout against SEA, robbing Coco Crisp of an 8th inning HR against OAK, and knocking a would-be HR back into the park for a no-RBI double instead of a 2-run homer against ARI.
And, here we are today with #18 getting the start in LF. Granted, it’s probably b/c in the hit-parade that was last-night, Juan Pierre went 0-fer, but I like my theory, so I’m sticking with it.
My brain is a fun place to live, thanks for asking.