April 12, 2009

CC beats Horacio in battle of No. 52s

Now we can say the Yankees are officially on a roll. Their 6-1 win over the Royals last night marked their third straight. Fans saw a completely different CC Sabathia compared to his opening day start. And in my mind, I think fans saw the real CC last night. The Yankees were playing a perfect ballgame until the ninth inning when the Royals finally squeaked out their lone run, but let's see how they built that lead.

Quick 'Cap:
Jorge Posada came up with the key hit in the first inning with a two-out, two-run double in the gap in right-center field off No. 52 Horacio Ramirez. The Yanks tacked on two more in the third from an RBI triple from the red hot Nick Swisher, and then another two-out RBI double from Posada. Swisher put on the finishing touches to the Royals in the sixth inning with a two-run bomb to left field.

Meanwhile, No. 52 Sabathia was throwing a gem. He was at 98 pitches through seven innings with a 6-0 lead, but he apparently talked his way into starting the eighth inning. He could only record two of the outs before he was yanked, but nobody in the Yankee dugout was mad at this guy. Jose Veras entered and K'ed Billy Butler. He gave up a meaningless run in the ninth, and Sabathia earned his first win as a Yankee. Full box score here.

It was another beautiful game to watch. A Yankees team featuring clutch hitting, and dominant pitching. You cannot beat that. Sabathia's fastball was filthy, and his changeup was impressive as well. I'm still learning his pitching arsenal, but from what I saw last night, his fastball was his go-to pitch.

Despite the win, the Yankees did have some bad news. Mark Teixeira was a late scratch in the lineup forcing Johnny Damon to be reinserted into the No. 2 slot. Teixeira said that his left wrist caused him to stop taking BP and confess to Joe Girardi. The switch moved Swisher to bat third, and he thrived.

Offensive Notables:
- Swisher has wowed Yankee fans in his past three starts (Yanks won all three games). His three RBIs made it nine in just 13 at bats for the season.
- Robinson Cano's 15-game hit streak ended today, as he went 0-for-4 with a strikeout. Of course, we all were too high on him too early. Though the Yanks still have a long way to go.

Pitching Notables:
- Sabathia showed his guts and his brilliance to the Yankees last night. He gave up six hits, walked none and struck out six.
- Veras ended the Yankees' streak of 11 consecutive scoreless bullpen innings.

Next Game:
Since Joba Chamberlain's spot in the rotation was skipped last night, he will be pitching today against Royals ace Gil Meche. First pitch is scheduled for 2:10 p.m. ET at the renovated Kauffman Stadium.

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