Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Home Run Derby in the Bronx

Yankees Blast Rays

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Tampa Bay
0 0 0 3 0 0 0 0 0
3 5 0
NY Yankees
1 2 0 0 0 1 0 1 X
5 6 1

WP - Pettitte (6-2) SV - Rivera (14) LP - Sonnanstine (4-6)

A home run hitter’s ballpark is good for both teams playing in a game there, but the home team can take advantage if they have a bunch of guys that can hit the ball in the air. That’s the case with the 2009 Yankees and the new Yankee Stadium, a marriage made in home run heaven. The Yankees hit four more home runs Monday night (they had just six hits in total) to account for all of the runs in a 5-3 win over the Tampa Bay Rays. The victory enabled the Yankees to take two of three from the Rays and move a full game ahead of the Boston Red Sox, setting up the big three game series in Fenway Park beginning Tuesday night.

Not to sound like John Sterling, but Andy Pettitte gave a gritty, gutty performance. He struggling in the fourth and fifth innings, but finished up by retiring the Rays in order in the 6th to raise his record to 6-2. Mariano Rivera came on for the third straight day and earned his 14th save of the season.

The Yankees built a 3-0 lead on Rays’ starter Andy Sonnanstine with home runs in the first two innings. Mark Teixeira hit his league leading 18th with two away in the 1st and Nick Swisher hit his 12th, with Robinson Cano aboard, in the 2nd.

Pettitte got out of a bases loaded jam in the 1st and struck out two batters in each of the first three innings. But something was amiss beginning in the 4th. Ben Zobrist reached on an Alex Rodriguez error and Pettitte wild pitched him to second base. One batter later, Michel Hernandez got the Rays on the board with an RBI single. Gabe Kapler then tied things up with a long 2-run home run to left field. Pettitte issued a 2-out walk to B.J. Upton, but retired Carl Crawford to escape further trouble.

A walk to Evan Longoria and a one out single by Zobrist put Pettitte into a jam again in the 5th, but some fancy footwork by Derek Jeter got him out of it. Jeter fielded Joe Dillon’s chopper near the second base bag, stepped on it and eluded the on-coming Zobrist to complete the double play to first.

Johnny Damon slugged his 12th home run of the year and 9th at home, with one out in the 6th to put the Yankees back on top for good. Jeter added some insurance by taking Sonnanstine deep in the 8th for his 8th home run of the year.

Phil Hughes got into his first game in relief and looked outstanding as he posted a scoreless 7th inning. His fastball was in the 93-94 MPH range and he blew a strike three pitch past a swinging Longoria to end the frame.

Game Notes

105 home runs have already been hit in 29 games at the new Stadium. 160 were hit all of last season across the street. There have now been 10 games with 5 or more home runs.

The Yankees had a rare oddity - they had no runners in scoring position and still won the game.

Mariano Rivera’s
save was his 496th and he and Andy Pettitte extended their own record of 59 combined wins.

Remember that 18-game errorless streak? The Yankees have now made in error in 6 straight games.

No comments:

Post a Comment