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Well that was a fun one, huh? Today's series opener in St. Louis, the classiest baseball town in the US (wank), featured a little bit of everything. There was some timely hitting, some good pitching, some great defense, and a ton of managerial moves and decisions that factored into the game. It was no short matinee by any means, but a really entertaining and great game to watch. In the end, the Yankees were able to come out on the winning side.
- The Yanks needed 9 pitches to get a run off Michael Wacha in the top of the 1st on a Brett Gardner walk and back-to-back singles by Jeter and Ellsbury. The Cards needed just 8 in the bottom half to tie the game up on a Matt Carpenter triple and a Kolten Wong ribbie double.
- Wacha retired 11 straight after the rough start, then got burned by an exact repeat of the 1st. Ichiro walked to start the 5th and the Yanks put 2 more singles together after him to regain the lead. A sac fly from Gardner extended it to 3-1.
- Chase Whitley matched Wacha's 0s through 4, and once again he came to the 70-80 pitch mark that has signaled the end of his day. Joe let him work past that and Whitley made it through the 5th before gassing out and loading the bases in the 6th. The Cards converted that into 2 runs to tie the game again.
- Gardner's 1-out single gave the Yankees a chance to go ahead in the 8th. But Derek Jeter decided to not swing and protect him on a 3-1 base stealing attempt and Gardner was gunned down by Yadier Molina to end the threat before The Captain K'd to end the inning.
- Carlos Martinez and Dellin Betances each showed off their top notch relief stuff for 2 innings to pitch the game into extras. Alfredo Aceves did the job and got them to the 12th, when the offense finally pieced together another rally.
- Jacoby Ellsbury walked and stole second, Brian McCann was plunked, Yangervis Solarte sac bunted them over, and Mike Matheny intentionally walked Ichiro so lefty Randy Choate could pitch to Brian Roberts hitting right-handed. Roberts singled to start a 3-run inning that also featured a clutch ribbie single by new backup first baseman Brendan Ryan.
- D-Rob was summoned for the save and he worked around a Derek Jeter throwing error to get it done, fanning 2 Cardinal hitters with a series of nasty curveballs.
- Gardner: 1-4, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 2 LOB. Had a couple nice at-bats to help put runs on the board and made an outstanding leaping catch at the wall late in the game to rob Molina and keep runs off the board.
- Roberts: 2-5, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 K. Game-winning hit in a really big situation. Might make teams think twice about pitching around people to pitch to him.
- McCann: 0-4, 1 R, 1 HBP, 1 K, 2 LOB. Looks really bad at the plate right now. Got a lot of pre-swing movement that makes him look off balance all the time, taking a lot shitty swings at good pitches to hit. He's a mess.
- Jeter: 1-5, 1 K, 1 LOB, 1 E. As bad as McCann looks at the plate, Jeter looks 10 times worse in the field. Still not making much good contact against the fastball either.
Middle game of the series is tonight and it'll be St. Louis native David Phelps getting the ball for the Yanks against Lance Lynn of the Cards.