Thursday, August 16, 2012

Hey, Where'd Andruw Jones Go?

(All he's done lately is high five people.  Courtesy of Debby Wong/US Presswire)

About 5 weeks ago, Andruw Jones was starting to percolate.  He was fresh off a 4-HR, 6-RBI binge against the Fraud Sawx in the final 3 games before the All Star break, he had his season batting line up to .244/.326/.535, and he had people talking about how he was primed to come out and have a big second half of the season just like he did in 2011.  Since coming out the other side of the ASB, that break out hasn't exactly come to form, despite the fact that Joe tried to ride the hot hand and gave Jones far more playing time and plate appearances in July than he had gotten in any of the months prior.  What gives?

Game 117 Wrap-Up: NYY 3 TEX 2

(That'll do, Fred.  That'll do.  Courtesy of The AP)

Good starting pitching always beats good hitting.  The Yankees know that better than most from some of their recent postseason exits, and they've been on the giving end of that in this series against the Rangers.  They got 2 great pitching performances from Phelps, Lowe, and Kuroda in the series' first 2 games and got another one last night from Freddy Garcia to secure another win in a close, low-scoring game.  The Yankee pitching has kept the Rangers' lineup in check all 3 games, and that's been the difference.

Game Notes:

- Freddy retired the first 7 hitters he faced and really had his slider working for him from the start.  He was efficient, he was throwing strikes, and cruising through the first 3 innings.

- The lineup got him all the run support he would need in the bottom of the 3rd against Scott Feldman, who was not nearly as efficient or effective as Garcia.  Back-to-back singles by Jayson Nix and Derek Jeter and an RBI double by Nick Swisher made it 1-0 before an out had been recorded.  A sac fly from C-Grand and a 2-out RBI single by Eric Chavez pushed the lead to 3-0.

- The one thorn in Freddy's side last night was Josh Hamilton.  He hit a solo HR in the top of the 4th to get Texas on the board, and a bomb in the 6th to pull them within 3-2.

- But the rest of the Texas lineup was stifled by Freddy's slider, and the trio of Boone Logan, D-Rob, and Sour Puss held them to 2.1 hitless innings of relief to save the win.