(PRONK!!!! Courtesy of the AP)
The Yankees have been rotating so many new bodies through this season that I almost forgot Freddy Garcia was on the roster, and in the rotation, just last season. It was a strange 2 years for Freddy in New York to say the least, and the guys who were on those teams got to see him again last night as the opposing starting pitcher for the Orioles. Freddy can still go out there and give some innings, but if his early SSS numbers were any indication the Yankees had the decided pitching advantage with CC Sabathia on the mound.
- Brilliant piece of hitting by Robinson Cano in the top of the 1st. After wasting a bunch of 2-strike offspeed pitches, he forced Garcia to throw him a fastball, which he promptly deposited in the left field seats for a solo HR.
- CC gave a run back in the bottom of the 2nd after throwing one slider too many to Chris Davis. Sabathia left it up and over the plate and Davis didn't miss it after fouling one off earlier in the at-bat.
- It looked like it was going to be a long night for Freddy after a David Adams HR (his first career Major League HR) in the 2nd, and then he seemed to find his stuff a bit and worked through 5 innings without further damage.
- CC was workmanlike through 6, though he was hardly sharp or dominant. He gave up a lot of hits on the fastball early, but used good slider-change combo to limit damage. All in all, he gave up 8 hits and 2 runs through 6, and Baltimore hitters just looked too comfortable against him.
- Surprisingly, Buck played the matchups and went lefty-lefty to start the 7th and it backfired on him big time. Troy Patton hung a 2-2 curve to Lyle Overbay and Overbay gave the Yanks the lead back with their 3rd solo shot of the night.
- Joe elected not to go to the 'pen in the bottom half and it backfired on him too. CC gave up 2 hits and the tying run in a handful of pitches and the go-ahead one just a few later. Belt-high sliders and changeups a shutdown inning does not make.
- It didn't look good heading into the top of the 9th, until a crumbling Jim Johnson gave up another solo blast to Travis Hafner to tie the game and give us some free baseball. Just an inning of free baseball, though, as consecutive Ichiro and Wells doubles in the 10th got a 2-run rally started and a clean Mo 9th saved the W.
- Adams: 2-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 LOB. Great night all-around for DA. He swung the bat pretty well at the plate and played an excellent game at third base. Kid looked really good.
- Bullpen: 3.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 6 K. After the hit parade CC let through, these guys came in and shut the door loudly. Kelley struck out 3, Logan got some key outs, D-Rob was overwhelming after giving up that 1 hit, and Mo was Mo.
- Hafner: 2-5, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI, 2 LOB. Guess that shoulder is feeling better. Game-tying and game-clinching RBI in his last 2 ABs of the night, one of them off a lefty. That's clutch.
- CC: 6.1 IP, 11 H, 4 ER, 0 BB, 2 K. The most disconcerting thing about CC's night last night may have been his performance against lefties. Nick Markakis and Chris Davis both had solid nights against him, and both the inconsistent slider location and diminished fastball velocity seemed to work against CC when facing them.
Getting a win when your ace has an off night is a great way to start a road series and the Yanks will look to build on that tonight. Phil Hughes needs to get back on track and he gets the start.