photo illustration by Samara Pearlstein
Who in the world is Armando Galarraga? I know that he’s 26 years old and from Venezuela. I know that he had pitched in exactly 3 big league games before tonight, with only one of those being a start. I know that he spent his first professional years bouncing around the Expos (and later Nationals) organization, which must have been all kinds of depressing. I know that he was traded to the Rangers as part of a package deal for Alfonso Soriano, and that he was then traded to Detroit for Michael Hernandez.
But who is Armando Galarraga tonight?
Tonight, Armando Galarraga is THE MAN.
Brought up as a replacement for an injured Dontrelle Willis, he went up against the 2007 Cy Young Award winner, and he outpitched him like crazy. Yeah, OK, Sabathia’s not exactly having a Cy Young kind of start to his season, but still. STILL. Galarraga’s a 26 year old kid with negligible experience at the major league level, and look at what he did tonight:
6.2 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB (2 HBP), 6 SO, 1 HR
One hit over 6.2 innings. Two runs, one of which was an inherited runner that Grilli let score. So basically Galarraga gave up a singleshot home run and he hit two batters in his final inning. That’s IT. That… that is a serious big league outing, kids and kittens. NO WALKS (other than the guys he plunked). SIX Ks. Imagine my hands flailing with an inability to properly express how impressed I am by this!
Of course I’m sure part of his success came from the fact that he had never faced any of the current Racist Logos on a big league squad. This may have hampered him a bit, but the disadvantage definitely lies with the hitters here, especially since Galarraga was pitching to billion-year veteran Pudge, who DOES know the Indians hitters perfectly well.
Galarraga’s awesomeness even rubbed off on Jason Grilli, who was the only reliever we had to see tonight, which is amazing and kind of unbelievable in and of itself. Grilli went 2.1 innings without giving up any runs of his own (letting in one of Galarraga’s). Has he finally been able to find his posterior with both of his hands? We’ll see how he holds up.
The bats went out of their minds again tonight. Well, duh, thirteen runs and all that. Again, this was partly because Sabathia is having a cruddy start to his season, kind of like the Tigers in a microcosm, but the hitters did look pretty good on their own. Everyone except for Pudge had at least one hit (Pudge went 0-for-6, didn’t even have a walk. Sigh) and some, like Miguel Cabrera and Edgar Renteria, went completely bat-bonkers. In Cabrera’s case, that worked out to 4-for-6 with 2 runs scored, 5 RBI. In Edgah’s’ case, that was 3-for-4 with 1 run scored and 5 RBI, 4 of those coming on a 5th inning grand slam. After having to watch Tigers pitching give up something like 50 grand slams last weekend to the Wrong Sox, it was REALLY nice to finally see one hit for the side of Righteous Felinity.
Three in a row. Mmm, tasty.
Oh, and please tell me that I’m not the only one who wants to DESTROY those FSN ‘April in the D’ ads? APRIL! IN! THA! DEEEEEEE! What band is that? I need to know so that I can NEVER PURCHASE ANYTHING OF THEIRS EVER. I am so heartily sick of that bloody song that I’ve started hearing it as ‘RAYPRIL in the D’ every time it comes on, which results in a moment of irritation that they’re playing the catdamned ad again followed by a good solid minute of me giggling my fool head off. It’s the only way I’ve managed to avoid throwing something at my TV thus far. Nothing in the WORLD is making me wish for May to hurry up and get here more than the freaking ‘April in the D’ campaign.
If we get ‘May in the D’ or a comparably heinous monthly jingle, I think we’re going to have to picket Comerica or something.