The Yankees won game 2 of the ALCS on Saturday partly because of a good outing by AJ Burnett, partly because of some solid bullpen work, partly by some good hitting by ARod, and partly cause of one of the dumbest errors of all time. With one out in the bottom of the 13th inning, a slow ground ball was hit to Maicer Izturis’s left. He was not going to be able to turn a double play, but rather than taking the easy out at first, he turned and fired to second, throwing the ball away and allowing the Yankees to score the winning run. Even discounting the fact that the elements made this a terribly impossible throw, it shouldn’t have been made in the first place. To illustrate, your Win Expectancy, courtesy of tangotiger.net:
0.7283: Bottom of extra innings, runners on 1b, 2b, 1 out, tie game
0.674: Get the out at 1b, leave runners at 2b, 3b, 2 outs
0.661: Get the out at 2b, leave runners at corners, 2 outs
There was a .013 difference between taking the out at first and out at second. There is no rational reason for Izturis to make that play. Even if he throws it poorly to first there likely is a catcher backing up the play and it becomes harder to score. Just bad baseball all around, and something Izturis should have been taught a long time ago.