(Looks like he's gonna get in. Courtesy of Getty Images)
Andy did the job in the day game yesterday, albeit a job that required 4 innings from the bullpen. Joe managed that game to win, as he should have, and used his core bullpen guys to do it. So that same pressure that was on Andy to deliver knowing it was going to be a tough day on the 'pen was transferred to David Phelps for the night game. Phelps has no worries about pitch count, but he hadn't exactly been given a ton of leash in his previous starts this season. He got some leash last night, and he ran with it all the way to a clean doubleheader sweep.
- Walking guys will kill ya, and Phelps got another lesson in that in the top of the 2nd. He gave out 2 consecutive free passes and got burned on a 2-out single by Adeiny Hechavarria.
- The bottom of the order got things started for the offense in the next half inning, with the suddenly red hot Ichiro involved again. Jayson Nix walked and stole second base, then got thrown out at home on a single by Ichiro. Never one to let a clutch 2-out scoring opportunity go by, Chris Stewart followed up with a run-scoring double to tie the game at 1.
- It was a damn good thing the bottom half was doing something, because the middle of the order was where rallies went to die. Alex Rodriguez and Curtis Granderson struck out to strand a Nick Swisher leadoff walk in the 3rd, then did it again to strand Swish and Cano to end the 5th.
- Phelps learned his lesson after messing around in the 2nd, and he was lights out after that. He found his curveball and retired 10 in a row from the 3rd through the 6th. Again, weak opposing offense, but still a solid job of pitching by Phelps.
- Phelps kept rolling into the beginning of the 7th until a Derek Jeter error broke his momentum. A 2-out walk ended his night at 110 pitches and still just the 1 run when he handed it over to the 'pen.
- Ichiro was just absolutely out of his mind yesterday. He stole second and third in just a handful of pitches in the 6th inning, and then singled home Granderson for the go-ahead run with 2 outs in the bottom of the 8th.
- I didn't think Joe would have the balls to use D-Rob or Soriano in both games, but he want back to Raffy for the 9th and Sour Puss delivered again. A 9-pitch save, his second of the day, and he earned his untuck yesterday with a multi-save day.
- Ichiro Suzuki: 4-4, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 4 SB. Have a motherfucking day, Ichiro! Dude went 7-8 in about 9 hours, and his second game was probably better than his first. He only saw 7 pitches, but as a guy who came in owning Romero that was all he needed. Went 2-2 with RISP as well, so not much bad you can say about the job Ichiro did yesterday.
- Phelps: 6.2 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 6 K. Tough luck ND for Phelps, but once again he pitched more than well enough to get the W. The innings and pitches were a new career high, and the kid continues to impress. Half the baserunners he allowed were in the troublesome 2nd, and other than that he was in control.
- A-Rod: 0-4, 3 K, 5 LOB. Came up 3 times with RISP in this game and went GIDP, K, K. That's bad, like real bad. And after the shit day he had in the first game A-Rod ended up being the anti-Ichiro for the doubleheader. Oh well, shake it off and go get 'em today.
The Yankees did exactly what they needed to do yesterday, in true team fashion, and put themselves in a good spot to sweep a series and put more distance between themselves and the Orioles tonight. Phil Hughes toes the rubber, and the Yanks would love a repeat of his last outing to give the 'pen some rest.