1st Guy: "Who's starting for the Astros?"
2nd Guy: "Keuchel"
3rd Guy: "OK... so we'll lose Game 1, no biggie."
That was the conversation this morning on the platform as I was going to work between 3 men construction worker gear. It was hilarious. I laughed and when they heard me... they laughed too. I laughed because in the back of my mind, that's how I felt as well.
Look, Dallas Keuchel is a freaking stud. While I love my Yankees team, I'll say it again... Keuchel is a freaking stud.
Will the Yankees win today? Damn, I hope so. But I also worry a lot about Masahiro Tanaka and what he can bring to the table today. Not only today... this season and beyond. He is not the pitcher we signed, mainly because of that arm. I have never felt truly confident in Tanaka. That being said, I will root hard for him... I really, REALLY like him and his work ethic and really want him to succeed.
The New York Times had a terrific article, headlined with these words: Yankees Get an Extra Day to Prepare for Dallas Keuchel. Almost like that reporter was on the same platform with us this morning. They write:
"The Yankees, of course, can be stopped by Keuchel. He threw 22 scoreless innings against them last season, including six in the American League wild-card playoff, a 3-0 Astros victory.
It was their struggles against left-handed pitchers, especially late in the season, that prompted the Yankees to trade for outfielder Aaron Hicks and second baseman Starlin Castro, who will both be in the order on Tuesday to help balance a lineup whose only real pop against left-handers comes from the 40-year-old Alex Rodriguez... Manager Joe Girardi’s decision to start Hicks meant having to find a place on the bench for either left fielder Brett Gardner or center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury, both left-handed hitters.
Girardi had the same decision to make when he chose to start Chris Young in left field during the wild-card playoff. He sat Ellsbury and his $153 million contract then. He will sit Gardner on Tuesday."
There are new options this season... new faces, a new energy, but what will the result be against Keuchel? The guy is... A FREAKING STUD. I think the goal is to not think too hard about this. Have a new, energized approach... don't over manage... just play ball.
More righties against Keuchel. It's a definite plus. Trust me. Let's just hope Girardi doesn't tinker.
Can we win this game? With our new offense, I think we can, but we gotta crack the code quickly. Keuchel doesn't waste time dismantling his opponent. The key today will be our pitching today. We need to be just as strong and dominant as Keuchel to stay in the game. If Tanaka can do that, we may scratch out a 2-1 victory.
Roll of the dice. It's Opening Day... I'm freaking excited.
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