Andy Pettitte authored a “masterpiece” yesterday, throwing eight-shutout innings against the AL East leading, Tampa Bay Rays, to lead the Yankees to a 5-0 victory. Pettitte (10-6) threw 114 pitches over his 8 innings of work, allowing only 4 hits, no walks, and striking out five.
The Yankees got all the runs they needed in the third, when Derek Jeter stroked a clutch, two-out, two on, two-run RBI double against Rays starter, Scott Kazmir, to give the Yanks an early 2-0 lead.
Up to that point, Kazmir (7-4) had struck out 5 of the first 6 batters he faced. But, Jeter’s big hit broke the ice in this game, and Andy Pettitte put the icing on the cake with his brilliant pitching effort.
The Yankees added three more runs in the eight inning on a solo homer by Melky Cabrera; and, a RBI double by Bobby Abreu, and a RBI single by Robinson Cano, to complete the scoring in this game. The question then was: Would Joe Girardi let Andy Pettitte pitch the 9th inning for the 5-0 complete game shutout?
Well, in this era of “pitch-counts” and “over-worked bullpens”, Girardi felt 114 pithes by Pettitte was enough to remove him from the game. To be very honest, of course, I am happy the Yankees won this game, but, I’m always disappointed when the manager does not let a starting pitcher stay in the game to get the complete game; and, especially, the complete game shutout. If Pettitte was pitching a no-hitter, I think Girardi would have let him stay in the game. [I think?]. So, why not keep him in to complete the, 5-0, four-hit shutout.
Just one of those “things” in this great game of baseball that really annoys me, is all !!!
Anyway, this was an awesome win for the Yankees, as they sent a message to the Rays, and the Red Sox, that they are not going away, and will fight to the end, to win the AL East. Hopefully, this win will be the start of a very long winning streak !!!