Almost Perfect Andy Spins A Gem …
Andy Pettitte was masterful on the mound in the first game of this three-game series against the Orioles, almost tossing a perfect game in the Yankees 5-1 victory at Camden Yards in Baltimore.
Pettitte retired 20 straight batters until Adam Jones hit a grounder to third base that traveled through Jerry Hairston’s legs for an error with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning that ended Andy’s bid for perfection.
There was still a no-hitter on the board, though, that was broken by next batter Nick Markakis on an opposite field single, past third base, down the left field line that made this game even more interesting. The game was now “on the line” with the go-ahead run coming up to the plate with runners on first and second, two outs, and the Yanks leading 2-0.
But, Pettitte protected the shutout by retiring the final batter Nolan Reimold, on a full-count, ground out to Derek Jeter at short.
Nick Swisher (3-for-4), put the Yanks in the 2-0 lead with a solo homer (#22), in the third, and a RBI double in the fifth. And, the Bronx Bombers gave Pettitte a little more breathing room by scoring three runs in the top of the eight on a RBI single by Johnny Damon, and a two-RBI double by Robinson Cano that increased their lead to 5-0.
The shutout was wiped off the scoreboard in the bottom of the eight inning when Pettitte gave up a solo homer to Melvin Mora that cut the Yankees lead to 5-1.
Andy Pettitte (12-6), finished his brilliant performance with 104 pitches thrown over eight spectacular innings, allowing one run, two hits, no walks, while striking out eight.
After the game, Jorge Posada said, this may have been Pettitte’s best start, as he could not remember Andy ever having that good of a game.
Brian Bruney was called into this game at the start of the ninth but could not close out the victory. He put two runners on base on a single and walk with one out, which resulted in Mariano Rivera having to take the mound.
The “Great Mariano” retired the final two batters to preserve this 5-1 Yankees victory, recording his 37th save.
To view boxscore, click on: Yankees 5, Orioles 1
Five Homers Power Yanks 9-6 Win Over Orioles …
In a game that Yankees starting pitcher A.J. Burnett was “awful”, lasting only 5.1 innings, while allowing six runs, on eleven hits, two walks, and two strike outs, the Bronx Bombers won their fifth game in a row on a power surge of “five” home runs that led to a 9-6 victory in the middle game of their three-game series vs. the Orioles.
Robinson Cano (3-for-4), two runs, two RBI’s, hit his 22nd homer.
Jorge Posada (2-for-4), three runs, three RBI’s, hit two homers (#18, 19).
Nick Swisher hit homer number 23.
Eric Hinske hit his 6th homer as a Yankee.
This game started out poorly for A.J. Burnett right from the first inning when Felix Pie hit a homer that gave the O’s an early 1-0 lead.
Robinson Cano then hit a two-run homer in the second, and Posada hit a solo shot in the third that gave the Bombers the 3-1 lead in this contest.
The Orioles tied the score 3-3 in the bottom of the third before Posada hit his second home run of the night that moved the Yanks back into the lead at 5-3.
But, A.J. once again could not hold the score as Luke Scott sent a soaring three-run blast out of the ballpark over the right field wall onto Eutaw Street to give the O’s a 6-5 advantage, and basically ended Burnett’s time on the mound in this game.
In his last seven starts, A.J. Burnett is 0-4 with a 6.54 ERA; and, when the Yankees tied the score 6-6 in the top of the sixth, this took Burnett off the hook for the loss. But, a “no decision”, or loss, is not what is expected from one of our top free-agent signings every time he takes the mound.
The Yankee bats are hot, though; and, back to back homers by Nick Swisher (two-run blast, his 20th road homer), and Eric Hinske’s solo shot in the top of the seventh, moved the Bombers into the lead for good with the score now 9-6.
The bullpen held the lead the rest of the way, as Marte (1-1), Robertson, and Coke built a solid “Bridge to Marinao” who recorded his 38th save tossing a scoreless ninth inning that closed out the Yankees 9-6 win.
To view boxscore, click on: Yankees 9, Orioles 6
CC Rides to 16th win as Yanks Beat O’s 10-2 …
The Baltimore Orioles scored a run in the bottom of the first, and Eric Hinske tied the score 1-1 with a homer (#7) in the third which was all the scoring through the first six innings of this game.
Then, in the seventh, Johnny Damon walked; Nick Swisher doubled; and both scored on a single by Alex Rodriguez that gave the Yanks a 3-1 lead.
For A-Rod, that was his second single of the game, his first being his 2,500th career hit in the fifth inning.
In the meantime, CC Sabathia (16-7), pitched a very solid game, throwing 105 pitches over seven great innings of work, allowing one run, on seven hits, one walk, and nine strikeouts.
Brian Bruney replaced Sabathia at the start of the eight inning, and he was ineffective once again as he promptly gave up a solo homer to Nolan Reimold (#13), that cut the Yankees lead to 3-2.
Bruney was awarded his 9th “hold” for his one-third of an inning on the mound which is a totally ridiculous stat in this situation.
A “hold” is given when a reliever holds the lead of his team when he makes an appearance in a game. In my view, though, a “hold” should only be awarded when a reliever holds the lead by not allowing any runs to score during his time in the game.
Anyway, Brian Bruney was not effective once again out of the bullpen. That is the most important stat that should concern Joe Girardi, as well as, all Yankee fans, as we go forward in this pennant drive.
Phil Coke and Phil Hughes retired the final two batters of the eight, moving this game into the top of the ninth with the Yanks still leading 3-2.
In the ninth, the Bombers broke this game wide open by sending 12 batters up to the plate scoring seven runs which included another two-RBI single by Alex Rodriguez.
This ninth-inning outburst by the Bronx Bombers capped the scoring in this game, framing the Yankees 10-2 lead.
Phil Hughes pitched a scoreless ninth inning to preserve this Yankees victory, earning his second save of the season.
To view boxscore, click on: Yankees 10, Orioles 2
The first place New York Yankees now have a record of (85-48), and a seven and a half game lead over the second place Boston Red Sox (77-55) in the AL East.
This places the Yankees “magic number” at 23 games.
Any combination of 23 Yankees wins, and, or, Red Sox losses will clinch first place in the AL East for the New York Yankees.
“Go Yankees” !!!
— Jimmy, “BY&L”