Joe Girardi has been ejected from two games this season. When he was run from a game against the Red Sox, the Yankees scored three runs in the next inning. On Wednesday night, he was thrown out in the sixth inning and, suddenly, the moribund Yankee bats came to life.
Francisco Cervelli homered right after Girardi went to review spreadsheets in the locker room, and Alex Rodriguez singled with the bases loaded to keep the good times rolling later in the inning. They kept swinging good bats for the rest of the evening, leaving with a much needed 8-4 win and raising a question about Girardi's departure?
Were the Yankees inspired by his ejection or just happy to see him go? It's a tongue-in-cheek question because there's no way it was either one. Girardi had to argue Brett Gardner getting picked off, because it was a terrible call, but it wasn't some Patton-esque move to fire up his troops before a big battle. And it's not like Tony Pena was calling the game without Girardi's input from just down the hallway.
The Yankee bats simply woke up, a maddeningly unscientific answer to a maddeningly unscientific slump that could just as easily return on Thursday night. The eight runs make it easy to forget that Braves pitchers Kenshin Kawakami and Kris Medlen threw five perfect innings to start the game. It would be swell if the answer to their woes was as simple as Girardi exiting the dugout. Not for Girardi, perhaps, but an easy fix to make if it ensured better results.
At least they've seen Thursday's starter Derek Lowe before, which based on their fear of new things should mean that their bats wake up a little earlier.