August 5, 2011

Joe Girardi’s bullpen call was huge tonight

In a fantastic opener to the series, the Yankees bullpen won. And it all boiled down to a gutsy call by Joe Girardi.

Bartolo Colon threw his 94th pitch but hadn’t completed the fifth inning. With two out, the bases loaded and Adrian Gonzalez stepping in the batter’s box, Girardi walked out to the mound.

Boone Logan met him their minutes later. The 26-year-old lefty was having a down year, somehow allowing lefties to hit for a higher average against him than righties. But that didn’t stop Girardi from making the move.

In short, Logan came through. And the rest of the bullpen took care of business just the way Brian Cashman jotted down in his notes in the offseason.

In defense of Girardi’s naysayers, it may not have been very gutsy to start the bullpen in the fifth inning knowing that the man he has starting for him tomorrow, CC Sabathia, hasn’t left before the seventh inning since May 8. Still, I don’t know if I could’ve made that call.

The Yankees might be lucky to walk away with a win after Jon Lester’s sixth-inning implosion; he hasn’t walked four hitters in a game since May. But the bullpen made a statement tonight, and I’m sure the thought of the Yankees’ historic comeback in the season series is creeping up into the minds and keeping many of Boston’s faithful awake tonight.

The Yankees, after all, are back in first.

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