Monday, April 1, 2013

An Ugly Opening Day

The Yankees certainly did not prove any of their haters wrong today, as the offense was anemic and the pitching was all over the place. However, the biggest culprit of the day was CC Sabathia who only lasted five innings and handed out four walks and gave up four runs, all earned. Sabathia is notoriously a slow starter, with his walk rates higher in March and April than in any other month. At any rate, CC is paid to lead the staff, he is the horse, the ace. Today, Sabathia looked like a run of the mill number give starter on a lifeless team. After exiting from the game after the fifth inning, the Yankees bullpen was lousy, with Joba Chamberlain leading the pack by surrendering three runs in two thirds of an inning in the ninth. The Yankees were only down by three runs beforehand, and Joba threw the game away with his lackluster effort; certainly not making a case for a big free agent payday.

Note that this is only the first game of the season. The Yankees have 161 games remaining, 161 more chances to win. (Note: the Yankees were swept out of Tampa to open the season last year).

Returning to this game, the offense looked like it did in October of last year. The Yankees squandered countless opportunities with runners in scoring position. Perhaps the most glaring opportunity came in the seventh when Andrew Miller walked the first two batters of the inning. Nunez, Cano and Youkilis all struck out to follow the walks. This is reminiscent of the 2012 season and it is something the Yankees need to get figured out. Hitting home runs is nice, but as Cervelli displayed today, a two-run single is just as satisfying.

After an off-day tomorrow, the Yankees will go back at it on Wednesday at 7:05 as Hiroki Kuroda will make his season debut against Clay Buccholtz and the Red Sox for game two of the season.

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