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Home » September 2009 Game CommentsSeptember 2009 » Ainote [合いの手]

Ainote [合いの手]

Game 154: September 26, 2009
Red Sox0
L: Daisuke Matsuzaka (3-6)
91-63, 2 game losing streak
W: C.C. Sabathia (19-7)
H: Phil Hughes (18)
S: Mariano Rivera (43)
99-56, 4 game winning streak
Highlights: Ainote is a virtuoso musical interlude in kabuki dramas played on the shamisen. While this music is worthy of the audience’s attention, it is there as an embellishment and accompaniment to the actors’ movements. Although Matsuzaka held the Yankees to one run over seven innings, he was overshadowed by Sabathia’s consummate performance: 7 innings, 1 hit, 2 walks, and 8 strikeouts.

How the Yankees Ruined My Vacation, Part Two: I did it again. Despite another flawless day in Laughlin I sequestered myself in my room to watch the middle game of the series.

C.C. Sabathia held the Red Sox hitless until the fifth inning. To lead off Mike Lowell grounded a single to center but was stranded at second base after he stole it (Jose Molina was doing his best Jason Varitek impersonation).

For the second game in a row Derek Jeter was cut off by diving plays by Boston infielders. In the bottom of the fifth with the bases loaded and none out Alex Rodriguez clipped the ball and it trickled along the first base line. Victor Martinez chased after it, gloved it, changed course towards home, and lunged toward the plate just as Jeter arrived with spikes up. Daisuke Matsuzaka then induced two pop outs to the infield to get out of the jam.

Going into the ninth Martinez’s hitting streak was in jeopardy. In his career the catcher had only two hits in 13 at bats against Mariano Rivera. Rather than fall behind the formidable closer Martinez hacked at the first pitch he saw and lined it into right field.

For me, Martinez’s single was as good as a grand slam after the previous 8⅔ innings. At least his bat isn’t on vacation.

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