I was standing in a restaurant bar, waiting for takeout, when Andy Pettitte threw his first pitch against Chone Figgins, a slider. Hit the corner. Strike one.
Second pitch, maybe a cutter. Hit the corner. Figgins just looked at it. Strike two.
Suddenly, I was channeling Ray Shalk from Eight Men Out.
"Oh man," I said, in the general direction of the Angels. "You guys are in trouble tonight."
All the years I've seen Pettitte, it's become easy to see if his stuff is on or not. Sometimes with the first pitch. Funny: the team that became famous in the 80s for trading away an All-Star team (Doug Drabek, Jose Rijo, Fred McGriff, Wille McGee, Jay Buhner, Al Leiter) took the field last night with three players who rose in the Yankee organization in the early 90s and kept regardless of all trade inquiries: Pettitte, Jeter, Jorge. And who should end the game but Mariano Rivera, the fourth face on the team's Mount Rushmore.
Well, off we go, to a Phillies team that has terrorized the National League for two years. A month ago, their bullpen was suspect. Now Brad Lidge has found his head. This team is good.