November 1, 2009

Homer-happy Yankees take 2-1 series lead

The once quiet World Series sluggers Alex Rodriguez and Nick Swisher broke out of their slumps in a big way to surge the Yankees past the Phillies 8-5 in Game 3.

Quick ‘Cap:
Jayson Werth’s first of two homers sparked a two-run rally in the second inning, but the Yankees retaliated in innings 4-8. Alex Rodriguez’s two-run shot brought the Yanks within one, and then Andy Pettitte’s RBI single (no joke) tied it up.

Johnny Damon lined a two-run double shortly after, Nick Swisher homered in the sixth, Jorge Posada smacked an RBI single in the seventh and Hideki Matsui crushed a pinch-hit homer in the eighth.

Pettitte was done after six. Joba Chamberlain and Damaso Marte did their parts in the seventh and eighth, respectively, but Phil Hughes hiccupped in the ninth. Letting up a solo homer forced Joe Girardi to bring in the heavy artillery, Mariano Rivera, to finish the game. Full box score here.

It took the Yankees’ bats three innings to wake up, but when they did, they stayed awake all night long. Cole Hamels was worrying me for awhile, but A-Rod’s two-run, originally-called-double-but-then-reviewed, homer was a momentum swinger. From that point on, I had confidence in the offense, and the Yankees played mistake-free baseball.

The only thing that was a mistake was putting in Hughes in the ninth. More on that later.

Line of the Night:
Swisher: 2-for-4, HR, 2 R, RBI, 2 K. The best part is, he told Ken Rosenthal before the game that he was feeling good heading into the game after his batting practice. He was right.

Up Next:
Game 4 is Sunday night. Same time, same place. But it will be CC Sabathia vs. Joe Blanton (unless Charlie Manuel has nightmares tonight and opts for Cliff Lee instead).

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