Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Wang crashes Taiwan's economy

Game 16: April 16, 2008 - 7:05 p.m. ET
Yankee Stadium, New York, N.Y.
Play-by-Play: Michael Kay
Color: John Flaherty and Al Leiter

Open: YES' highlight-reel opens are getting better and better. The production value remains high -- this time Gothic overtones accompany footage of the Yankees & Red Sox doing battle. But the best part? No nasal Kay voiceover to spoil it this time. The images do indeed speak for themselves. The less Kay, the better.

Kay: "Well, the Yankees have won two in a row, the Red Sox have won four in a row. They're neck-and-neck in the AL East. So what else is new?"
  • Ummm, we don't know....could it be that you're actually calling a game?

Bot 1st: "Let's take a look at the Red Sox defensive schematic behind [Clay] Buchholz."
  • What is this? Football? Let's not get cute and just stick with defensive alignment.

Heading to break: "A history-making home run by Alex Rodriguez ... the 522nd of his career, passing the great Ted Williams and Willie McCovey. A couple of Hall of Famers. A-Rod will join them soon."
  • Oh, that's right. We forgot that Induction Weekend 2023 was next month.

Top of 2nd: On a ball in the dirt that hits Chad Moeller on a bounce: "Another nice block by Moeller."
  • According to Kay, any block is a nice block. A catcher could miss a ball with his glove by three feet only for the ball to hit him in the face and Kay would say it was a nice block. Kate Moss is about the only person capable of not making that block. OK, maybe Calista Flockhart too.

Bot 2nd: On Jason Giambi and his miniscule batting average: "I would think that Jason would want to get off the interstate and get three or four cheap hits."
  • Prior to the at-bat, Giambi was hitting .094. After grounding out, Giambi's hitting .091. It would be progress for him to get on the interstate. Kind of hard to get off when you're not on.

Bot 4th: After Al Leiter displays how to grip a change-up: "We got Leiter now on camera -- with the right hand he showed the change-up, not the left."

Leiter: "What? What are you looking at?"

Flaherty: "No, he showed it with the left that time."

Kay: "Really? Are you sure? Well, then I'm wrong. I was looking at it in a mirror."
  • Or you're just an idiot. Either way works.

Derek Jeter singles with the bases loaded, driving in two and knocking Buchholz out of the game. Kay: "Clay Buchholz said he dreamed of facing Derek Jeter. As they say, 'Be careful what you wish for.'"
  • Not a bad line, but this is now the third time Kay has made reference to Buchholz's childhood dream. As they say, "Be careful of knowing nothing and saying the same dumb thing over and over."

Top 5th: The Red Sox score a run and then load the bases with none out.
Kay: "Now how's this for pressure for a pitcher? An entire economy in Taiwan rests on how Chien-Ming Wang does."

  • Yes, because another hit here and Taiwan is going to have to get the IMF's phone number. Just about the worst hyperbole I've heard from Kay. And given his talk about the Taiwanese stock exchange -- the TSEC for the uninitiated -- I'm pretty sure he was serious.

  • J.D. Drew singles to center, plating two runs. Time to send over the Peace Corps.

Top 6th: "Russ Ohlendorf still in there."
  • Nice to see Kay taking a page out of Tim McCarver's book. And going a step further -- getting the name wrong of a player on his own team.

Bot 8th: Kay's call on Jorge Posada's two-run single: "That one's off the ....... handle of the bat and he dunks it for a base hit. One run scores. Here comes A-Rod, he'll score. Posada's at second with a double. The throw gets away, but the pinch-runner, Johnny Damon, stops at third."
  • Anatomy of a bad call: First, Kay was completely frozen and left a good two full seconds of dead air while he tried to think of something to say. Then the throw in from J.D. Drew hit Posada as he slid into second base, but we can't rely on Kay to mention something like that. To top it off, he mentions Damon for the first time as he reaches third base. Always a good sign. Another reminder that while Kay is terrible away from the action, he's also terrible calling the action.

Top 9th A foul ball off the bat of Julio Lugo is retrieved by a cameraman in the first-base dugout. Kay asks the cameraman, Matt, if he's all right. Matt visibly says something along the lines of, "Yeah, I'm all right," but since YES shockingly isn't in the habit of having their cameramen's mikes hot, Kay doesn't hear him and assumes he's being ignored.

Kay: "Doesn't even answer. They all ignore me. Absolutely no respect."
  • Drop me a line when you give them some reason to. Giving notice would be a good first step.

The Yankees win the game, 15-9. The game took 4:08 to play -- way too much Kay for one night. Anyone know of a good emergency eye wash shower in the area?


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