Cliff Lee beat the Yankees last night. Again. Phil Hughes got shelled by an anemic offense. Of course, the suddenly smoking Red Sox blasted the Rays despite having seven – count ‘em – players on the disabled list.
We know that the New York media furnace will dissect, analyze, investigate and reiterate every minute detail of last night’s loss. Talking heads, writers, bloggers and fans will bash and berate the team ad nauseam and rightfully so. Such is life in the Big Apple.
Forget it. The loss is just that, one singular L. In a week it will be a bitter memory. In a month it will be forgotten. Of course, some fans will want to re-open the wound wide. There is too much negativity and heartbreak in the world to dwell on it. Yankees fans must hope the team learns from it and responds so we can all move on.
Let’s delve into The Bright Side – a snapshot of positivity that Yankee fans can take from every loss. Hopefully, this column will be few and far between.
Nick Swisher: 2-4 with two towering solo shots
Swish provided two of the few bright spots on a night where Cliff Lee was dominant. Both blasts cleared 400 feet and gave him 13 long balls on the season. He is on pace for 30 homers and 100 RBI and a .300 average is not out of the question. Clubhouse chemist or not, Swisher is having an excellent season with the bat. It always cheers me up to think he was essentially acquired for Wilson Betemit.
Curtis Granderson: 2-4
A pair of singles doesn’t usually stand out except when they come against one of the game’s best lefties. Granderson’s struggles against southpaws are well documented so connecting against an ace who had only allowed 18 hits to left-handed batters all season is an accomplishment.
Jorge Posada: 1-3, RBI, BB
Posada’s 9th-inning double was the ultimate tease. Yankee fans began to recall Sunday’s heroics against the Dodgers but were disappointed when the mini-rally ended moments later. While the run-scoring hit was most definitely a blast, Posada’s eight-pitch walk in the 2nd inning is even more impressive. Coming into the game, Cliff Lee had walked four hitters this season. Before Tuesday, he last walked someone in May. Consider that Arizona’s Dontrelle Willis walked six in four innings Tuesday. It didn’t change the outcome of the game but it’s better than striking out.
Anthony Federico covers all levels of the game for Baseball Digest and Gotham Baseball. He is the author of “Must Be Nice” – a loving look at the glory of beer-league softball. Check out www.mustbenicebook.com for more info or follow him on Twitter @AntFeds