Saturday, August 9, 2008

Angels Weave Another Victory

Yankees vs. Angels. Who do you think won? The Yankees preferred to keep Ian Kennedy in the minors, but injuries forced them to bring him up for last night's game. Only two innings in, the front office was probably already ruing their decision. Kennedy did no better than his previous starts this season, getting hammered for 5 runs in two official innings. He actually faced five batters in the third inning, but retired none of them and the Angels went on to a 10-5 victory.

The Yankees closed the gap to within 6-5, but Darrell Rasner and Brian Bruney let the game get out of reach again and there would be no comeback like last Sunday's improbable Yankees win over the Angels.

Kennedy remains a conundrum. He rocketed through the Yankees farm system last year, and perhaps that was the problem- getting to the majors too quickly. This year he's been like an amateur golfer who can't put two good shots in a row together.

Singles by Eric Aybar and Vlad Guerrero put two men aboard with two outs in the first inning and both runners scored on a Torii Hunter double. Hunter's career numbers against the Yankees are mediocre, but this season he's homered twice and driven in 8 runs in just three games.

The Yankees managed to briefly hold the lead, 3-2 after Alex Rodriguez belted a solo home run, his 25th, in the second inning, and the Yankees loaded the bases in the third. Jason Giambi drew a bases-loaded walk from Jered Weaver and Xavier Nady reached on an infield single. With a chance to do more damage, Robinson Cano continued his poor hitting with the bases loaded by bouncing into an inning-ending ground out.

The lead would be short lived as the Angels jumped on Kennedy in the third, sending him to an early shower. A Mark Teixeira double followed by a Guerrero single tied the game, and consecutive singles by Hunter, Garrett Anderson, and Howie Kendrick brought home two more for a 5-3 lead. None of the balls were hard hit, but they were hits nonetheless.

Trailing 6-3 in the sixth, the Yankees made it a game again when Nady hit his 5th home run in 13 games in Pinstripes. It was also his 13th RBI as a Yankee. Cano followed with a triple and scored on a Melky Cabrera ground out to cut the Angels lead to 6-5. But there would be no more joy in Anaheim for the Yankees.

Hunter opened the seventh inning with a home run off of Rasner and the Angels piled 3 more runs on in the inning to finish off the Bombers. But really they were finished off when Ian Kennedy took the mound.

News and Notes

Howie Kendrick, 4-5 last night, is batting .507 (36-71) in 18 career games against the Yankees. He's also sporting a 1.263 OPS.

Joba Chamberlain said he'd be ready to go the first week of September, but Joe Girardi is taking a much more conservative approach, mainly so Chamberlain doesn't try to rush back.

Alex Rodriguez's home run was the 548th of his career.

The Yankees dropped to 6.5 games back in the AL East after Tampa beat Seattle 5-3. Boston lost to Chicago, so the Yankees remain 3 back in the Wild Card.

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