(Courtesy of the AP)
Masahiro Tanaka had his winning streak dating back to 2012 ended earlier this week in Chicago. It was the first time a team got to face him for the second time, which was naturally a big talking point after the results of the start, but Tanaka chalked it up to poor command on all his pitches and an off-day. He got a chance to face the other Chicago team for the first time yesterday. With no command issues, no Jose Abreu, and no history for the White Sox to go on, Tanaka could get started on another winning streak. He did just that.
- Tanaka got a nice, fat 4-run cushion to work with in the top of the 2nd thanks to 4 hits, a walk to load the bases, and a sac fly. Brett Gardner's 2-run single was the biggest hit.
- He made that lead stand up by holding Chicago hitless over the first 3 innings. They made him work for it (50 pitches in those 3 innings), but Tanaka was better at finishing with 2 strikes than he was against the Cubs.
- That high early pitch count did come back to nab Tanaka in the 6th, when he gave up a leadoff double and 2-out single to give Chicago their first run of the day. A pair of walks in the 7th signaled the end of Tanaka's day.
- He got plenty more run support from his team. Derek Jeter tripled and scored in the 4th, singled home Alfonso Soriano in the 6th, and Brian Roberts hit a solo HR in the 8th.
- Adam Warren picked up Tanaka in the 7th and worked a scoreless 8th. Matt Daley did the same in mop-up 9th inning duty and the Yankees got themselves a split.
- Jeter: 4-5, 1 3B, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 K. I call him out earlier in the afternoon, he has a 4-hit game. Coincidence? You decide.
- Tanaka: 6.2 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K. That's more like it. Tanaka couldn't be as efficient as he wanted to be thanks to some pesky ABs by the White Sox hitters, but his location was much better and he really didn't start to show any cracks until the 6th and 7th.
- Mark Teixeira: 0-4, 1 BB, 2 K, 3 LOB. Not an ideal day from the cleanup spot for Teix.
- Brian McCann: 0-4, 2 K, 3 LOB. Ditto McCann in the 5-hole. This game could have been a major blowout if these 2 had decent days. The top of the order certainly gave them plenty of chances.
The Yanks wrap up this midwest road trip with 3 games in St. Louis. Today's series opener features Chase Whitley and Michael Wacha as the starting pitchers.