Five, six, seven hitters Robinson Cano, Jorge Posada and Hideki Matsui combined for seven hits, eight RBI and six runs, helping the Yankees (31-21) crush the Rangers (30-21) 12-3.
Brett Gardner started off the scoring in the second with an RBI single, and then later scored on a balk by Rangers starter Vicente Padilla. The Yankees’ counterpart A.J. Burnett gave away the lead on one pitch. Nelson Cruz, Texas’ most productive offensive player, jacked a three-run homer to left. Besides that pitch, Burnett was brilliant.
Down 3-2, the Yankees stormed back in the fourth rallying for seven runs. Johnny Damon’s RBI single tied it up, and Alex Rodriguez grounded into a fielder’s choice with the bases loaded to give the Yanks the lead. After Cano and Posada added RBI singles, Matsui blew the game open with a three-run shot to right-center field. Posada struck again in the sixth inning with a three-run homer of his own to make it 12-3. Full box score here.
It was an easy victory against a first place team. Two plays in the game really pleased me though. I liked when Mark Teixeira broke up a double play ball that A-Rod hit in the fourth. Not only was it good baseball, but it extended the inning to allow six runs to score. Tex was 0-for-2 in the game, but also was hit by two pitches which brings me to the other play I liked.
In the fifth, Burnett threw a pitch over Cruz’s head that was clearly intentional. I like the play because he defended his teammate Teixeira, and showed some toughness. That swagger is a valuable commodity, and he backed it up by striking Cruz out. Now that’s a pitcher.
Unfortunately, their errorless streak came to an end when Posada overthrew second base on a steal.
- Posada gets player of the game, and has stayed hot since returning from the DL. He went 3-for-5 with four RBI, and raised his batting average to .313.
- Derek Jeter quietly pounded out three singles, scored once and walked once. He extended his hitting streak to 16 games.
- Burnett actually had a very nice game other than the homer. I’m content with 7 IP, 8 H, 3 ER, 1 BB and 8 K.
The Yankees will look to hand Rangers Starter Scott Feldman (4-0, 3.91) his first loss of the season Wednesday night. Feldman will have to beat Andy Pettitte (5-1, 4.10) to stay undefeated.