All Things Bubba

Because how can you not love a baseball player named "Bubba"?

Thursday, July 06, 2006

What a difference a day makes

July 5, 2006: N.Y. Yankees 11, Cleveland 3

During batting practice before the game, Bubba was chasing the batted balls in the outfield. He won over at least one Cleveland fan by giving them a ball after catching it. I didn't expect to see any more of him last night, since Torre once again left him out of the lineup.

As it turned out, he got to play a lot...though not under the circumstances I would have wished. Damon didn't take BP, because he felt some pain in an abdominal muscle. He soaked in the hot tub instead, but realized after his first AB that the pain was getting worse. Before going out to play CF in the bottom of the 2nd, he told Bubba Crosby, "Get ready."

Bubba was of course the only OFer left on the bench, Reese having been sent down to make room for Kris Wilson. He really had to get ready in a hurry, because Damon was leading off in the top of the 3rd.

Perhaps that's why he didn't do very well. Ball, called strike, ground out to 1B.

He came up again in the 4th. (Yes, the 4th. The Yanks batted around in the fourth, and Melky got his first career grand slam.)

When Bubba came up, there was one out. Miguel Cairo was on 1B. Ball, foul, ball. On the 2-1 count, Torre called for a hit and run. Bubba swung and missed - out in front of a changeup. But Cairo made it anyway. (He got a good jump, and Martinez is really awful at throwing out basestealers.) But the very next pitch was looped to CF. Cairo scored from 2B. RBI single for Bubba!

Jeter came up next and hit a single, moving Bubba to 2B. Giambi hit a sac fly, and Bubba moved to 3B. Then A-Rod hit a single. Bubba scored easily.

When all was said and done, the Yanks scored eight runs in the 4th inning.

Bubba struck out his last two times at bat, alas. He came up again in the 5th. Two outs, Cairo on first. Called strike, foul, ball, called strike.

And in the 8th: No outs, Cairo on 3B. Ball, foul, foul, ball, called strike. Sigh. I was hoping he'd get at least a sac fly.

Can't complain, though. It was a great night for Yankees fans. And Bubba did get a hit, an RBI, and scored a run.

There was a scary moment on offense. Bubba dived after a ball in the center-left gap, and Melky, also pursuing the ball, crashed into him. Melky managed to jump over him (kicked Bubba's shoulder a little), and neither was hurt. Phew.

Melky and Bubba collide
Melky probably had a better shot at getting that ball. We all love Bubba's hustle, but he sometimes carries it too far. Trying too hard to make an impression and get some playing time, I think. At the time, there was no one base, the Yanks were up by 8 runs - and there were no OFers left on the bench. A little more caution and a little less hustle were in order.

After the game, they interviewed Melky, with Octavio Dotel doing the translation. They asked him what happpened on the play with Bubba. He gave a two-word answer that didn't require translation: "No comunicaciĆ³n."

posted by BubbaFan, 6:30 PM


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