The Yankees got 7 innings of good work from David Phelps on Thursday night in the series opener against the White Sox. It was the first step in an effort that Joe is going to have to undertake to get more out of his replacement level 3-5 spots in the rotation if he's going to avoid burning out his bullpen before the end of summer. He had a chance to take another step in that direction this afternoon with Vidal Nuno's latest start, and like Phelps before him, Nuno gave his team distance and quality in his start. A late comeback and a bullpen bounce back from D-Rob and the Yanks had their first win of the series.
- It didn't look like Nuno was going to make it out of the 1st inning. He gave up hits to the first 3 White Sock batters and they put 3 runs on the board thanks to a ribbie double, sac fly, and RBI groundout.
- Chicago singled to lead off the 2nd and the 3rd innings as well, but were never able to put enough hits together to lengthen the lead. Nuno got big outs when he needed to and kept the game close for his offense.
- The offense flat out didn't show up to support Nuno at all. They got their first baserunner on an error in the 3rd, their first hit on a Mark Teixeira double in the 4th, and never mounted much of a threat against John Danks through 7.
- They did finally put 2 runners on in the 8th (#smallvictories) but had 0 runs to show for it. The bullpen picked up where Nuno left off and kept it a 3-0 game going into the 9th, and that's when the offense finally decided to show up. With 2 outs, they put together 3 hits and 1 walk to generate 3 runs and send the game to extras. Brian McCann had the big game-tying RBI single.
- In the 10th, Jacoby Ellsbury got the big hit to hopefully break him out of his month-long slump. He smacked a 1-0 splitter for his second home run of the season to give his team a 4-3 lead, and D-Rob made amends for last night's blown save by holding down this win with 3 strikeouts in the bottom of the 10th.
- Nuno: 7 IP, 9 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 5 K. This is the type of pitcher Nuno needs to be at this level. He's always going to give up hits because his stuff isn't that great. If he can make pitches and get outs when he needs to and limit damage, he can be good enough to get by. Right now, that's all the Yankees need.
- Ellsbury: 2-5, 1 HR, 2 R, 1 RBI, 1 K. Get the game-winning HR in extras, get a "fuck yeah". That's how it works at AB4AR.
- Top of the Order: Combined 0-10, 1 K, 3 LOB for Brett Gardner and Derek Jeter today. That helps explain the lack of runs in the first 8 innings.
Series finale is tomorrow and the Yankees have a chance to salvage a split. They'll send their ace, Masahiro Tanaka, to the mound to get it done against somebody named Andre Rienzo.