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Last night's game was probably the first must-win game of the season for the Yankees. 3 losses in the last 4 games, offense sputtering again, and nothing of significance gained in the Wild Card race in the last week. They couldn't afford to lock up a series loss to the lowly Blue Jays after sweeping them in the prior series if they wanted to be taken seriously as a Wild Card contender and they had a guy on the mound in Andy Pettitte
who's pitched in more big games for this team over the years than anybody in decades. He's no longer the big game Andy of old, at least his recent performance didn't suggest he was, but last night he put a lot of his old tricks on display in holding Toronto down to fuel a comfortably quasi-blowout.
- Before we get to Andy, how about those 1st inning fireworks?? The Yankees started off with a Brett Gardner
double and Derek Jeter
RBI single to take a lightning quick 1-0 lead, then J.A. Happ
hit Robinson Cano
in the next at-bat. Cano had to leave the game, and things were tense for a few innings waiting on the diagnosis, but there were no breaks and he's day-to-day with a contusion.
- With 2 on and nobody out after the Cano delay, Alfonso Soriano
stepped in and demolished a 3-run home run to left field to make it 4-0. In the first 4 batters of the game Andy had a 4-run cushion.
- That cushion was more than enough for Pettitte last night. He retired 10 of the first 11 batters he faced and he had good life on both his 4-seamer and cutter.
- He put 2 runners on in the 4th and 5th innings, but worked around trouble with a couple of big strikeouts. A pair of inning-ending GB double plays in the 6th and 7th and it was vintage Andy all over the place.
- The offense didn't need more runs, but that didn't stop them for tacking them on with too many home runs. Soriano hit another to lead off the 3rd, Mark Reynolds
yoked one to left to start the 6th, and Alex Rodriguez
smoked on to center in the 7th.
- Pettitte left after 7 scoreless and Adam Warren
handled the final 2 innings. 6 baserunners and 1 run, still rough going for the kid.