July 1, 2009

Yanks take back-and-forth game with M’s

The Yankees (44-32) blew two different two run leads, but still came away with the victory after a three-run eighth inning rally to beat the Mariners (39-37) 8-5. The win marked their sixth straight victory, and now trail Boston by 2.5 games (thanks to them blowing a nine run lead against the Orioles!).

Quick ‘Cap:
The Mariners started out looking like the Mets when they handed the Yankees two runs on a silver platter in the second inning. Third basemen Chris Woodward recorded two errors in the same play, allowing Robinson Cano to score, and Jorge Posada later scored on a sac fly.

Joba Chamberlain let up a solo shot in the third inning, but the Yankees got that run right back on Melky Cabrera’s groundout in the fourth.  The Mariners tied it up at three in the fifth, as Chamberlain started losing control. He was taken out with one out in the sixth, but no runs scored.

Alex Rodriguez hit what looked like the game-winning two-run homer in the seventh, but the Mariners rebounded again in the eighth to tie it back up. However, Cabrera drove in the actual game-winning run in the eighth, and Derek Jeter plated two more to put the game out of reach. Mariano Rivera did his thing in the ninth for the 19th time this season and 501st in his career. Full box score here.

It was a thrilling win, and the Yankees now really look like the great team they were earlier this month. It was clutch hit after clutch hit, and more strong pitching (except for Brian Bruney).

Bruney blew the lead in the eighth, but the Yankees backed him up. It was unclear why Joe Girardi opted for him rather than keeping in the hot Phil Hughes. After the game, Girardi declared that it is his role to pitch the eighth. That has to be put into question now.

Chamberlain pitched just okay. I’m actually starting to get worried about him because of his inability to go deep into ballgames. Could me and half of the world be wrong about him being a starter? He MUST work on working ahead of the count to get some quick at bats; it’s the only way he’ll reach the seventh inning again.

Line of the Night:
Cabrera: 1-for-3, 3 RBI, R. He was starting to fall a little bit for a while, but hopefully another game-winning hit can jumpstart his bat again.

Up Next:
The Yankees will look for lucky No. 7 Wednesday night in a duel between Jarrod Washburn (4-5, 3.22) and Andy Pettitte (7-3, 4.38).

P.S. Meanwhile, I will be playing (hopefully pitching) under the lights in a Legion baseball game in Keene, NH. (so I won’t be able to follow my Yanks).

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