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Tag:Juan Rivera
Posted on: April 25, 2010 8:22 pm
Edited on: April 25, 2010 9:39 pm
 

Girardi: "I screwed up"

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Even World Series-winning managers get the blues.

The Yankees' 8-4 loss to the Los Angeles Angels in the series finale here Sunday came complete with a very unusual moment in the seventh that directly preceded Kendry Morales' three-run homer that salted away the win for the Angels.

With Angels on first and second, two out, the Yankees trailing 5-4 and Kendry Morales at the plate, Joe Girardi ordered an intentional walk to Yankee-killer Kendry Morales.

And then he didn't.

Afterward, Girardi acknowledged, "I probably should have gone with my first instinct."

Follow along:

With Morales at the plate (and hitting .390 -- 23 for 59 -- lifetime against the Bronx Bombers), Girardi waved four fingers in the dugout, catcher Francisco Cervelli reinforced it and reliever Damaso Marte threw intentional ball one.

Then, confusion.

Girardi called off the walk and popped out of the dugout, taking a couple of steps toward the mound.

His intention: To summon reliever David Robertson to finish the intentional walk. Then, with two out and the bases loaded, have Robertson go hard after the next hitter, Juan Rivera.

But a few steps out of the dugout, Girardi suddenly changed his mind and U-turned.

So the lefty Marte resumed pitching to the switch-hitting Morales (batting righty) and threw ball two. But, now, not intentionally.

And taking full advantage of the Yankees' hesitation, Torii Hunter stole third base to put runners on first and third.

Next pitch, ball three.

Next, with Angels manager Mike Scioscia smartly green-lighting Morales on 3 and 0, the first baseman crushed a fat Marte fastball for a three-run homer.

Morales at the time was 1 for 3 against Marte in his career, the one hit being a double.

Had Girardi gone with his first instinct and brought Robertson in to face Juan Rivera with the bases loaded, for the record, Rivera had one RBI single in one lifetime at-bat against Robertson.

The only thing more extraordinary than a sense of wavering from the Yankees' skipper was how bluntly he assessed himself afterward, even acknowledging that once the count on Morales ran to 3 and 0, he "probably could have put up four fingers again."

"I screwed up, in a sense," Girardi said. "Not everything I do is going to be right."

 
 
 
 
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