The Fine Line Between Success And Failure

yankees lose

New York has seen better days.

In a baseball town that’s often World Series or bust, the 2017 Yankees have caused mixed emotions. Today, there is only 1 acceptable emotion: SORROW.

But as the dust settles on the season, we can ask the question from the blackboard:

Was this season a success for the Yankees??  

Many have grown accustom to winning, so their answer is an emphatic NO. Others look at the expectations prior to the season and laud this season as an overwhelming success.

Can’t it be both??

At the start of the season, the Yankees were projected to win 83 games. That’s not a playoff bound team. They didn’t know what they had in right field. They didn’t know they had an ace pitcher. And they didn’t know they’d be 1 game away from the World Series. So, how could anyone possibly be disappointed with the result of this season?? Spoiled, entitled, a**hole Yankees’ fans, that’s how.

YES, I’m a Yankees’ fan. My entire life. I’m just one of the good ones.

Humility goes a long way. Especially when you often find yourself hoisting the trophy. This was not the Yankees’ year. The same reason they overcame adversity to reach Game 7 of the ALCS, is the same reason they faltered in Game 7 of the ALCS. They’re young, and unexperienced, and naïve.

If I don’t know how big the moment is, how can the moment be too big?? 

The Houston Astros are a very good team. They deserve to be in the World Series. 1 different hop or different 1 bounce, and the Yankees could be in the World Series. That’s what it means to be in a Game 7. Rather than scrutinize every mistake made in the ALCS, oversimplify we shall….

ALCS in a nutshell:

Yankees’ offense in New York: 19 runs in 3 games

Yankees’ offense in Houston: 3 runs in 4 games

That’s it. That’s the whole story. That’s all she wrote.

This oversimplifying stuff is fun. Let’s try it again:

Looking through April 1st (start of the season) glasses: Huge Success

July 31st (trade deadline) glasses: That’s About Right

October 18th (Yankees’ 3-2 ALCS lead) glasses: Complete Failure  

We (Yankees’ fans) shouldn’t have tantrums about not winning a World Series since 2009. Just think — we could be Mets’ fans. But, we also shouldn’t count our chickens before they hatch. Having a solid young core doesn’t guarantee sustained success. The ‘Baby Bombers’ may never win a World Series. Or, they can win 4.

Only time will tell….

 

Was the Yankees’ season a success?? Was it a failure?? Post your thoughts in the comment section below.

 

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

 

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Thursday Is The New Saturday

dodgers-beat-cubs-in-game-five-to-reach-world-series

Stupidity. Elation. Revenge. Greatness.

Thursday night was filled with all of the above — and more….

Marshawn Lynch Is A Jerk!!

We already know the elevator doesn’t go to the top floor, but Lynch hit a new low Thursday night. In the 2nd quarter, of a 3-point game, Derek Carr was hit late by Marcus Peters. This led to a healthy scuffle. In his infinite wisdom, Marshawn Lynch ran onto the field in defense of his teammates. Not the smartest move, but some would call it admirable. It’s what he did next that lands him in the ‘Einstein Hall of Fame’. Check out the sequence here. Lynch can be seen grabbing and shoving an official during the scrum. What an idiot!! He was immediately ejected from the game. He should also be fined and promptly released from the Raiders. If he’s not, I’ll be confused. He sucks anyway.

Don’t let stupidity overshadow a fantastic football game. If you like offense, and 4th quarter comebacks, and last-second touchdowns, this was the game for you!! Check out the crazy, 31-30 box score. Those are video game numbers!! The Raiders, down 9 entering the 4th quarter, completed a dramatic comeback with a buzzer beating touchdown. After 2 touchdowns were nullified, and the Chiefs lent a hand with 2 dumb penalties, Derek Carr finally connected with Michael Crabtree in the corner of the end zone. The game clock read 0:00, and after the extra-point, the celebration was on.

The Drought Is Over

After 29 years, the Los Angeles Dodgers are returning to the World Series. They defeated the Chicago Cubs, 11-1 in Game 5, and will await the winner of the ALCS (Yankees/Astros). The Dodgers had a magical season, winning a league best 104 games. And one of their lesser known players had a magical game Thursday night. Enrique Hernandez, super utility man, hit 3 home runs, driving in 7 runs. Decent.

The Dodgers avenged their 2016 NLCS loss to the Chicago Cubs, enjoying major contributions from Chris Taylor and Justin Turner. The Dodgers are hopeful their young shortstop, Corey Seager, will return to the diamond for the World Series. Seager missed the NLCS with a back injury. Maybe Seager will channel some Kirk Gibson in this one….

Melo vs. Knicks Headlines NBA On Thursday Night

16. 17. 21. No, not my locker combination, but the score differential in the 3 NBA games played on Thursday night. 3 stinkers from 3 bad teams; Lakers, Bulls, and Knicks. Luckily, the NBA and their insane offseason created storylines for months. Melo opened his season against his old team, and Little Ball made his Lakers’ debut.

Ball, Patrick Beverly. Patrick Beverly, Ball. Welcome to the NBA rook‘!! All the little guy could muster up was 3 points on 1 of 6 shooting from the field. What a shame!!

As for Melo, he was Melo. He dropped 22 points (8-20 from the field) and contributed nothing else to his team. The Oklahoma City Thunder are a superior team to the Knicks, so it wasn’t a contest. Russell Westbrook picked up where he left off, finishing with a monster triple-double (21 points, 16 assists, and 10 rebounds).

How Bout Dem Yankees?!

And now, it’s Yankees’ time!! The Yankees head back to Houston to take on the Astros in Game 6 of the ALCS tonight on FS1 @ 8:08 P.M. EST. Luis Severino and Justin Verlander will take the hill. I’m going to hang my hat on 1 stat (and hope it works). Verlander’s e.r.a. in starts after throwing 120+ pitches is over 6.00. He threw 124 pitches in his last start. Fingers are officially crossed.

I know who MLB is rooting for. Yankees vs. Dodgers is MLB’s wet dream. I just want the Yankees to take care of business tonight, because Game 7’s scare me.

What were you watching Thursday night?? Will the Yankees clinch a World Series birth tonight?? Tell me in the comment section below.

 

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:10 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

Tanaka Shows Emotion For The 1st Time..Ever — Shuts Out Astros In Game 5

tanaka game 5

2, 2, 1, 4, and 0. No, that’s not my ATM pin number, it’s the number of runs scored by the Houston Astros in the ALCS. While the storyline continues to revolve around Aaron Judge and the Yankees’ potent offense, the pitching staff continues to be overshadowed.

Yes, the bats needed to wake up, as they were limited to 1 run each of the first 2 games, but they wouldn’t be leading the ALCS 3 games to 2 without stellar pitching. Everyone knows how dominant their bullpen is, however, they’ve sported the best starting rotation so far this postseason. The only team who has performed near the level of the Yankees is the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Heading into this season, the Yankees’ starting rotation was littered with question marks. How would Luis Severino perform in his 1st full season as a starter?? How much does CC Sabathia have left in the tank?? Can Michael Pineda stay healthy for an entire season?? Who will be the 5th starter??

The Yankees overachieved this season, so the majority of these questions were answered in the affirmative, however, they did falter at times. Pineda was shut down for the year in early July. Jordan Montgomery, who filled the 5th starter role to perfection, ran into an innings limit. And the 1 part of the rotation the Yankees assumed would be the foundation, Masahiro Tanaka, turned out to be the least consistent piece of the puzzle.

Come October, throw everything out the window. Except for my TV. Don’t throw that out the window. Postseason baseball breathes new life into the air. Some rise to the occasion, some succumb to the pressure. The Yankees have risen.

Last night, in a crucial Game 5, Masahiro Tanaka, pitched an absolute gem.

CAN I GET A SHUTOUT HERRREEEEE?!?!

Tanaka’s Day: 7 innings, 3 hits, 0 runs, 1 walk, and 8 strikeouts

The Astros have picked a bad time to go ice cold. 9 runs in 5 games is not going to cut it. Again, this is a testament to the Yankees’ pitching because the Astros are a powerful offense.

Here are the Astros’ offensive rankings in the regular season:

Hits (1,581) – 1st

Runs (896) – 1st

Home Runs (238) – 2nd

Batting Avg. (.282) – 1st

RBI’s (854) – 1st 

Luis Severino will look to keep those powerful bats at bay for 1 more game. Despite being pulled early from his last start, after getting struck with a ball, Severino will take the hill Friday night against Justin Verlander. Verlander mowed down the Yankees in Game 2, so the Yankees will be out for revenge. Hopefully they jump on Verlander early. He’s a rare breed that gets stronger as a game goes on.

Catch all the action tomorrow on FS1 @ 8:08 P.M. EST. When the Yankees win, they’ll return to their 1st World Series since 2009.

LET’S GO YANKEES!!

Score Prediction: Yankees 5, Astros 3 

Who do you think will win Game 6?? Post your prediction in the comment section below.

 

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:10 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

 

 

Yanks Yank Game 4 From Astros

yankees-astros-2017-american-league-championship-series

Now that was a baseball game!! Game 4 of the ALCS between the New York Yankees and Houston Astros has been the best game of the postseason — so far.

Like I said yesterday, hits are contagious. Until the bottom of the 7th inning, a lonely single by Todd Frazier was the Yankees’ only hit. And then, THIS happened. Aaron Judge launched a majestic, 427-foot home run to straight away center field. Not only was this home run a thing of beauty, it was crucial. It got the Yankees on the board, bringing the score to 4-1. It got the crowd going. And most importantly, it forced A.J. Hinch to pull Lance McCullers Jr. McCullers, who 24 hours earlier didn’t know he would start Game 4, was spectacular. The Yankee fan in me wants to thank Astros Manager, A.J. Hinch, for his quick trigger. Letting the horrid Astros’ bullpen loose was the beginning of their end….

Chris Devenski was the 1st victim. He surrendered a triple, a sacrifice fly, and a walk. Devenski was promptly pulled for Joe Musgrove, who got out of the 7th inning unscathed. Little did he know, the 7th inning was just the appetizer. The main course was set for the bottom of the 8th inning. A combination of Musgrove, Ken Giles (the Astros’ closer), and Luke Gregerson allowed the Yankees to bat around, bringing 10 batters to the plate. What started with an innocent single by Todd Frazier, ended with a 2-rbi double by Gary Sanchez. And just like that, the 2-run Yankees’ deficit turned into a 2-run surplus.

If only someone had predicted a final score of 6-4….

Yes.

That’s what they call shameless self-promotion.

While it’s refreshing to see the bats come to life, it shouldn’t overshadow Sonny Gray’s pitching performance. Gray, the forgotten man, hadn’t pitched in 12 days. That is NOT easy. Like Hinch, Joe Girardi had a quick trigger with his starter, pulling Gray after just 85 pitches.

Sonny Gray’s Day: 5 innings, 1 hit, 2 runs (1 earned), 2 walks, and 4 strikeouts

You couldn’t ask for a better performance, in those circumstances, from a guy who hadn’t pitched in nearly 2 weeks. Part of Gray’s success can be tied to Austin Romine getting his 1st start of the postseason at catcher. Gray’s numbers are significantly better with Romine than Gary Sanchez. However, the Romine experiment needn’t last more than 1 day. He’s useless with the bat, and looked rusty with the glove. An ill-timed catcher’s interference didn’t help his cause either. Toss Sanchez back behind the plate, and slot Chase Headley in as the DH. Headley’s bat is finally heatin’ up. Headley, who is historically streaky, looks to be trending in the right direction.

Ride the wave Girardi!! Don’t fight your instincts. I know the robot in you hasn’t taken COMPLETE control of your body — yet.

Game 5 is coming at you today with another awkward 5:08 P.M. EST start. Tune in to FS1 for all the action, as Dallas Keuchel and Masahiro Tanaka will climb the hill. Saying Keuchel owns the Yankees is an understatement. He hasn’t allowed a home run against the Yankees in 217 innings. That trend, gets bucked, today.

Score Prediction: Yankees 3, Astros 2

 

Who do you think will win Game 5?? Post your prediction in the comment section below.

 

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:10 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

 

CC Strikes Again!!

cc sabathia

When in doubt, call CC Sabathia. With the Yankees’ season teetering on the edge, they called upon their stopper. Their hefty (crafty) lefty. This season, CC Sabathia is 9-0, in 12 starts, following a Yankees’ loss. That’s unbelievable!!

CC’s Day: 6 innings, 3 hits, 0 runs, 4 walks, and 5 strikeouts 

I don’t love the 4 walks, but if CC is going to keep this Houston Astros’ lineup scoreless through 6 innings, he can walk as many batters as he’d like. Which brings us to the most crucial part of the game. In the top of the 3rd inning, CC gave up a single and walked 2, loading the bases for clutch youngster, Carlos Correa. CC, got CC, to pop-out to shortstop. Disaster averted.

Monday night’s Game 3 victory by the Yankees was filled with big moments.

In Order.

You’re Welcome.

5.) Starlin Castro reached base on a swinging bunt. With 2 outs in the bottom of the 2nd inning, Castro started what turned out to be a 3-run inning. Stay tuned. There’s more to come on this inning.

4.) The 5-run, bottom of the 4th inning. This inning included a double by Greg Bird. A walk by Todd Frazier. An rbi single by Chase Headley (the Yankees’ 1st hit from their DH this postseason). Brett Gardner getting hit by a pitch. A wild pitch which brought in a run. And a 3-run home run by Aaron Judge!! This gave the Yankees an 8-0 lead, putting the game out of reach. They would go on to win 8-1.

3.) Not 1, but 2 spectacular catches by Aaron Judge. The 1st can be seen here. Judge sacrificed his body, slamming into the right field wall at full speed. Is it possible that catch got him going at the plate?? The 2nd catch was a phenomenal display of athleticism. Check it out here. 

2.) Here’s where CC earned his contract….

The aforementioned pop-out by Carlos Correa. Keeping the Astrosoff the scoreboard was key, but like they say, “Timing is everything.” The Yankees had just taken the lead, and the last thing they wanted to do was cough it right back up. As he did all night, CC clamped down.

1.) Todd Frazier. A ‘Jersey Kid’ who’s livin’ the dream. Frazier stepped to the plate in the bottom of the 2nd inning and hit what can only be described as a ‘Yankee Stadium Home Run’. Watch it first, then we’ll talk.

Have you ever seen a ball, that looked like a bloop-single, land in the bleachers?? I know I know, it’s Yankee Stadium. And yes, I’m a lifelong, die-hard Yankees’ fan. But that was ridiculous. I’m not complaining. It just looked silly. It was, however, just what the doctor ordered for a struggling Yankees’ offense.

Strikeouts ARE contagious, but so ARE hits.

The questions is, can the Yankees’ bats keep it going against Lance McCullers Jr.??

Check out Game 4 action EARLY Tuesday evening on FS1. First pitch is set for 5:08 P.M. EST. Sonny Gray, off 1,407 days rest (or 12), will get the ball for the Yankees.

Prediction: Yankees 6, Astros 4

 

Who do you think will win Game 4?? Post your prediction in the comment section below.

 

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:10 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

 

 

Who Needs Sleep When You Have Thursday?!

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I was going to get a good night sleep….until Thursday happened. Thursday night brought us an oxymoron, a moron, and a nail biting elimination game.

A Good Thursday Night Football Game

This term is an oxymoron. But every so often, despite having our viewership locked up, Thursday Night Football provides something worth watching. In a matchup of 4 and 1’s, the Philadelphia Eagles flew into Carolina to take on the Panthers. It was a close, competitive game, but just as I predicted, Cam Newton threw the game away. Not 1, not 2, but 3 interceptions led to a 28-23 victory by the Eagles. I couldn’t be happier for a nicer guy.

On the brighter side of things, Eagles quarterback, Carson Wentz, continued to impress. He posted 3 touchdowns, no interceptions, and added 25 yards on the ground. That’s not too shabby against a stout Panthers’ defense.

Wentz is the real deal.

The Eagles (now 5-1), will have plenty of time to rest, as their next game is a primetime, Monday Night matchup with the Washington Redskins. The Panthers (4-2) will look to bounce back against rookie quarterback, Mitch Trubisky, as they take on the Chicago Bears next week.

Suspend Me Please

She loves me. She loves me not. She loves me. She loves me no….

That’s what Ezekiel Elliot’s status has been like this year. He’s suspended. No, he’s not suspended. Okay he’s suspended, but he can play. Oh wait, now he’s really suspended. Elliot’s 6-game suspension will start next week when the Dallas Cowboys return from their Bye Week. The 5th U.S Circuit Court in New Orleans (Federal appeals court) made this ruling on Thursday.

Elliot and his legal team are exploring their options, primarily their right to appeal the suspension — again. For now, the Cowboys (2-3) will need a game plan while they’re without the services of their star running back. A running back committee of Darren McFadden, Alfred Morris, and Rod Smith has already been discussed.

Stay tuned. Something tells me the final chapter hasn’t been written on this story yet.

An Inning To Forget

When Max Scherzer is in the game, the opposing team doesn’t usually stand a chance. After retiring the 1st 2 batters of the 5th inning in Game 5, that appeared to be the case. The Nationals were winning when Scherzer entered, however, calamity was about to ensue….

  • Infield Single
  • Bloop Single
  • 2-Run Double
  • Intentional Walk
  • Strikeout That Didn’t End The Inning
  • Catcher’s Interference
  • RBI Hit By Pitch

Ummm, wow!! That brought the grand total in the 5th inning to 4 runs scored on 3 hits and 2 errors. Yes, this inning was insane, however, it is a microcosm of the Nationals, postseason persona. The Nationals have won the NL East 4 out of the past 6 years, and have lost in the 1st round of the playoffs each time. On the contrary, the Cubs won their 4th straight elimination game and advanced to their 3rd consecutive NLCS.

The Cubs will travel to La La Land to take on the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLCS. Game 1 can be seen on TBS on Saturday @ 8:08 P.M. EST.

But more importantly, the Yankees take on the Astros in Houston tonight for Game 1 of the ALCS. Tune in to FS1 @ 8:08 for all the action.

Projected Starters: Masahiro Tanaka vs. Dallas Keuchel  

Prediction: Yankees 5, Astros 4

Let’s Go Yankees!!

 

Who do you think will win Game 1 of the ALCS?? Post your prediction in the comment section below.

 

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:10 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

 

Yankees C.C. (Complete Comeback)

cc

In CC we trust!!

In a decisive Game 5, the Yankees turned to 37-year old, Carsten Charles Sabathia Jr. Sabathia, now a crafty veteran, channeled his former self. Sabathia, and his left arm, were tremendous, striking out 9 in 4 and 1/3 innings. Notoriously a slow-starter, he wasted no time, striking out the first 2 batters he faced. He kept hitters off balance with his swooping slider and surprised Indians’ hitters with his sneaky fastball.

Do you know what the most impressive part was?? He outdueled AL CY Young favorite, Corey Kluber, twice. For the 2nd straight outing, Kluber was ordinary. After lasting just 2 and 2/3 innings in Game 2, he was destined for just 3 and 2/3 innings on Wednesday. It’s hard to explain. Kluber is one of the best pitchers in the world. But hey, I’m not losing any sleep over it….

Kluber was tagged not once, but twice, by Didi Gregorious. Didi connected on a solo home run in the 1st inning. And struck gold again in the 3rd inning with a 2-run home run. It was DD and CC to the rescue.

Too corny??

Sorry.

Following their crushing defeat in Game 2, winning the ALDS was all the more impressive. These young, “baby-bombers” showed grit and resiliency, punching their way out of a corner. After completing the comeback Wednesday night (5-2), the 2017 Yankees became just the 7th team to comeback from an 0-2 deficit to win a Divisional Series.

If I had told you Aaron Judge would go 1 for 20 in this series, but they’d win, you would have called me names I can’t write on my website. Aaron Judge is an impressive, young man. He’s humble. He’s a great athlete. And he hits baseballs really, really far. But he now holds an unenviable record. Judge’s 16 strikeouts in the ALDS are the most by any player, in any playoff series, in MLB history. No es bueno.

Judge mashes mediocre fastballs (under 94 mph), and has a great eye (127 walks). However, he struggles against fastballs 95 mph or faster and strikeouts far too much (208). Pitchers usually raise his eye level with the ‘high-heat’, and then drop the hammer with a low-and-away breaking ball. If the Yankees are going to have a chance against the Houston Astros in the ALCS, Judge will need to lay off those nasty breaking balls. He should walk down to 1st base over and over again, and set the table for Gary Sanchez in this series. This will force opposing pitchers to serve up inside fastballs to Judge later in the series. Then, my fellow Yankee fans can bust out their telescopes to track Judge Moonshots….

Again, I’m not rooting against my team. I simply call it like I see it.

ALCS Prediction: Astros in 7  

Prove me wrong, again, please….

 

Who do you think will win the ALCS?? In how many games?? Post your prediction in the comment section below.

 

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:10 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!