Monday, May 9, 2011

Jeter's Bat Says Take That

On a day when CC Sabathia wasn't sharp and the Yankees defense resembled the Bad News Bears, Derek Jeter made his doubters take notice. The Captain, who had driven a double off the wall the previous night, smashed a pair of long home runs to lead the Yankees to a come from behind12-5 victory over the Texas Rangers.

It was all part of a five-home run power display put on by the Yankees, who snapped out of their offensive doldrums in a big way. Francisco Cervelli capped things off with a grand slam in a six run 7th inning that put the game away. (Afterwards Cervelli candidly admitted he didn't realize the bases were loaded).

But Jeter was the story on Sunday, a day in which he had four hits in a game for the first time since August 4th of last season and hit his first home run since last August 24 (According to the Elias Sports Bureau - the 259 ABs was the second longest drought of his career). With the Yankees trailing 4-2 in the 5th, Jeter hit a David Bush fastball close to 400 ft. over the right center wall.

With the game tied at four apiece in the 7th, Jeter went even deeper, this time off of the Yankees favorite left-handed punching bag, Arthur Rhodes. Jeter had his first multi-HR game since last June when he hit a Rhodes fastball well beyond the 407-ft. in right-center, about 25 ft to the left of his previous blast, to put the Yankees ahead for good. It was Jeter's fourth hit of the game and pumped his average up to .281 (he would finish the day at .276 after going hitless in his final two at-bats).

Jeter wasn't the only one hitting the long ball on Mother's Day though. In the 7th inning alone, Curtis Granderson followed Jeter's second home run with his team leading 11th, Cervelli hit his grand slam, and Mark Teixeira smacked a 2-run shot, his ninth.

Sabathia picked up his third win despite a six inning, five run (three were earned), four walk performance. The Yankees were sloppy in the field, officially charged with four errors, but made many more physical and mental errors in the game.

Luckily for his teammates Derek Jeter was his old self, at least for one day anyway. And you can bet that when the Yankees return home to face the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday some of the "Doubting Dereks" will be giving him a big hand his first time at bat.

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