(That'll do, kid. That'll do. Courtesy of Getty Images)
The lineup fiddling that started with Lyle Overbay in right field on Monday night continued last night, although I doubt you'd find many who thought last night's lineup looked even close to as good as Monday's. Ichiro was in the leadoff spot and in center field while Brett Gardner got the night off, Jayson Nix was batting second and playing shortstop while Kevin Youkilis was down at 6, and David Adams was playing second base while Robinson Cano got a night at DH. I questioned if all of this was necessary against Scott Kazmir, the guy who basically disappeared from existence before finally getting back to the show this year, but it's what Joe did and it was just enough to get a win.
- Real strong start for Phelps, a complete 180 from his previous one. He was throwing all 5 of his pitches and throwing them all for strikes right from the first inning, and gave up just a lonely infield single while striking out 5 through 4.
- The new lineup gave Phelps all the support he would need in the bottom of the 3rd. 4 straight hits from the 8-2 spots in the lineup put 2 on and 1 run in with 1 out, and for the second straight game Mark Teixeira cleared the bases, this time by yanking a 3-run HR down the left field line.
- Really impressive work by Phelps to get out of the 5th inning unscathed after walking the first 2 batters. Even more impressive that he bounced back and finished with a 1-2-3 6th. He wasn't overly efficient, but he was very good last night.
- Joe went wholesale defensive changes and to the bullpen in the 7th and it almost blew up in his face. Joba Chamberlain was terrible, giving up a walk, single, and 3-run HR with 2 outs, and needed Boone Logan to bail him out.
- Yanks left 2 on in the 7th and a runner at 2nd in the 8th, but still held down the 1-run lead thanks to a vintage D-Rob Houdini act and a 1-2-3 9th from the G.O.A.T. to make it 2 in a row.
- Phelps: 6 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 7 K. Not only did he worst Phil Hughes' shittiest start of the season, Phelps also bested Hughes' bounce back start with 6 shutout frames last night. He was throwing everything at every time and throwing it all for strikes. When you've got the ability to do that, you can be successful. That's what Hughes has never been able to do and it's what Phelps has to make himself successful as a starter.
- Teix: 2-3, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 1 LOB. Joe said it took C-Grand about a week to get his swing going in the right direction. It's taken less than that for Teix, who homered for the second straight night and really looked to be seeing the ball well last night. He's already been a huge boost.
- Cano: 0-4, 2 K, 5 LOB. Single-handedly blew the chance in the bottom of the 7th by grounding into an inning-ending double play. Really struggling to find it right now.
- Joba: 0.2 IP, 2 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 1 K. He had the damage limited after the walk and couldn't make pitches to get out of the inning. Joba's done little to solidify that 7th inning spot since coming off the DL.
The Yanks look for the sweep and an official winning streak tonight and they do it with their ace on the mound. CC Sabathia goes tonight against Corey Kluber.