Top Yankee Games of the Decade Part 2

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Here is part two of our top 10 Yankees games of the decade.

5. October 13, 2001 Game 3 ALDS "The Flip": The Yankees found themselves down 0-2 in the best of 5 series going on the road to Oakland. So this was a must win game for them. No team had ever come back 0-2 on the road adding a little more pressure too. The game was a pitcher's duel but the Yankees struck first on Jorge Posada's solo home-run in the fifth for the only run of the game. Leading 1-0 in the 7th Mike Mussina faced Terrence Long with a runner on first and two outs. Long hit a double down the rightfield line. Shane Spencer fielded the ball and overthrew both cutoff men (Soriano and Martinez) on the relay to home plate. Jeremy Giambi was on his way home when out of nowhere Derek Jeter scooped the ball on the first base line. With all his momentum carrying him toward the dugout he quickly flipped the ball banckhanded to Posada, who tagged Giambi (who was not sliding) on the back of the leg for the final out of the inning.

The play saved the game and the Yankees season as they went on to win 1-0 and eventually came back to take the series in 5 games. The flip showed everyone what makes Jeter so great. Most teams don't run a third backup on a relay, but Jeter was standing at the pitchers mound waiting to make the necessary decision. A's third baseman Eric Chavez said, "you probably never see that play made again."

4. November 1, 2009 Game 4 World Series "The Double Steal": I'm sure everyone remembers this game as it is the most recent on the list. The Yankees were up 2-1 heading into the game with CC Sabathia pitching on three days rest. The Yankees got to Joe Blanton early taking a 2-0 lead in the first inning. But Sabathia gave up an RBI double to Chase Utley to pull the Phillies back within one run. With the game tied at two in the fifth, Jeter and Johnny Damon had back-to-back RBI singles to put them up 4-2. However, Sabathia's troubles against Utley continued as he hit a monster shot into rightfield tocut the score to 4-3. It was Sabathia's last pitch of the game as he went 6.2 innings giving up 3 runs and striking out 6.

In the bottom of the eighth Joba Chamberlain came out in relief and struck out the first two batters he faced. Joba was one pitch away from striking out the side when Feliz crushed the ball tying the game at 4-4 with a solo home run. The Phillies had all the momentum and called on Brad Lidge for the top of the ninth, who had yet to blow a lead or tie game in the postseason.

Like Joba, Lidge got the first two outs with ease. Then came Johnny Damon. Damon worked a tough at-bat reminiscent of Paul O'Neill's at-bat off Armando Benitez in 2000. On the ninth pitch Damon singled to left bringing up Mark Teixeira. With Teixeira up left-handed the Phillies had a lefty shift bringing third basemen Feliz to the shortstop position. On the first pitch Damon took off to steal second. The throw was low and in front of the bag. As Damon popped up he did something that caused every fan from Philadelphia to New York scream at their television...he started running to third.

Because of the shift nobody was there to cover third base. Lidge could have, but he just stood on the mound and watched. Damon caught Feliz offguard and easily made it to third base. Lidge proceeded to hit Teixeira, setting up A-Rod with a go-ahead two out double to put the Yankees ahead 6-4. The Yankees won 7-4 and the rest is history. If it were not for Damon's at-bat or his heads up, instinctual play of stealing two bases on one pitch, the game could have very well headed into extra innings with the Phillies having the home-field advantage.

To me it was this inning that decided the World Series. Because of the double steal the Yankees won this game. After they won it, it was only a matter of when the Yankees would win their 27th World Series title, not if.

So I expected to write way more than I originally planned, so the next games will appear on another post, probably later tonight.


Post a Comment

Legal Disclaimer

The owners, operators, and writers of the Michael Kay's Successors blog are in no way sponsored, endorsed or affiliated with the New York Yankees or the aforementioned Michael Kay. Because if they were, we'd be on World Series championship #39 by now.

Also, anything written about broadcaster/on-air personalities is all in good fun and meant to be taken as a joke.

  © Blogger template The Professional Template II by 2009

Back to TOP