May 21, 2009

Yankees win without Joba, sweep Orioles

The Yankees starter Joba Chamberlain left the game with a bruised knee in the first inning, but the Yankees (24-17) carried on with their usual business without him and won their ninth consecutive game.

Quick ‘Cap: 
Alfredo Aceves took over for Joba in the first, and tossed 3 1/3 shutout innings against the Orioles (16-25).  The Yankees’ bats took care of Aceves by scoring four in the first and two in the second.  Robinson Cano was responsible for three of the six runs with his RBI-double in the first and two-run homer in the second.  He batted second in place of Johnny Damon who was given a day off.

Jonathan Albaladejo followed Aceves and struggled in his 2 1/3 innings.  He allowed four runs – two of them from homers.  With Hideki Matsui’s solo shot in the fifth, the Yankees were ahead 7-4 going into the eighth.  Jose Veras almost blew the game, but managed to induce a fly out  from Brian Roberts.  Mariano Rivera worked a perfect ninth for his ninth save.  Full box score here.

The Orioles were clearly overmatched this series by a hot Yankee team.  The Yanks averaged nine runs per game in the three wins.  The main concern of this game is Chamberlain’s health, but a bruised knee does not sound so bad.

Noteworthy Performances: 
- Cano went 3-for-4 with three RBI and two runs.  He seems to be getting hot again after a mini slump. 
- Francisco Cervelli went 0–for-4 in the contest, losing 47 points from his batting average.  Although, he came into the game hitting .370, and has been taken for granted. 
- Albaladejo was charged with his first four runs of May, and his ERA rose back up to 6.00.

Up Next: 
The first interleague action begins tomorrow in baseball, and the Yankees will remain at home to face the defending champion Phillies.  Brett Myers (3-2, 4.50) opposes A.J. Burnett (2-1, 5.02).

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