Wednesday, September 10, 2014


A play at the plate and two sides of a baseball night in New York

By Rich Mancuso

BRONX, NEW YORK, SEPTEMBER 10- Much of the Tuesday night post game discussion in the Bronx with New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi centered on a play at home plate in the fifth inning that did not become a run for the Yankees in their loss to Tampa Bay.  A run that further diminished their slim playoff chances could also be blamed on a continued and experimental rule to avoid collisions.

And across the Robert Kennedy Bridge at Citi Field, 10,000 or fewer fans watched the cross-town Mets take the second of three games from the lowly Colorado Rockies.

Take it as it is, but with 17 games remaining for the Mets and 20 for the Yankees, both teams are within five-games for the last wild card in the National and American Leagues. Realistically the chances for October post season baseball in New York are not going to happen.

Then there is the David Wright side of this baseball night. The Mets captain is shut down for the season because of a continued problem of inflammation to the rotator cuff in his left shoulder. Better safe than never is the Mets terminology as they look to have their captain healthy and back to form in 2015.

The hope is, that Wright will avoid surgery. He will undergo a six-week rehabilitation program to strenghten the shoulder. Wright was talking with optimism and perhaps he should have been shut down sooner after injuring the shoulder sliding head first in a game on June 12th.

He disputed the bad numbers at the plate were attributed to the shoulder, though the speculation all along has been a bad shoulder led to a bad David Wright.

Since the All-Star break, Wright did not have the numbers. He hit .238 with seven extra-base hits, no home runs and was trying to pull the ball to no avail.

"I don't know,” Wright said about the shoulder being an impact on the sub par season. "As I've said all along, I'm not one to make excuses. This season has left a sour taste in my mouth. I'm confident that after getting healthy, I'll return to doing what I'm capable of."
And that is what the Mets hope for. Because a healthy and productive David Wright can only make them that much better if they intend to contend next season.

That play at the plate in the Bronx was attributed to a rule that still has the baseball insiders confused.

Rays’ left fielder Matt Joyce threw out Stephen Drew in the fifth inning because catcher Ryan Hanigan blocked Drew who was sliding. Earlier, Major League Baseball issued new guidelines to teams and their umpires  on what the catcher can do under that circumstance.

It was one of many plays this season that continues to cause confusion and needed further clarification. Though at this point, clarified or not, the Yankees needed the call to go their way after Girardi called for the review.

Girardi commented, “Wish the rule was back to normal. If I’m a baserunner I’m going to run him over.  At least the catcher has gear.Think you have to look at it,” he said about making some revisions about a rule that was implemented to prevent concussions via the collision.

“I know they’ve accomplished what they’ve accomplished   but when you are playing for spots, I’m sending my guy home.  In baseball you have to win everyday, that’s the bottom line.”

The Yankees were a half game out of that wild card a month ago. The effort, according to Girardi is still there and he said, “I’m not frustrated because I see what they go through.”

Yet it is frustrating to see the Yankees season dwindle down to a few remaining games and miss the post season a second straight year. But is is more optimistic to know that David Wright will be on a full road to recovery with some rest and proper treatment.

No comments: