A.J. Burnett and Jon Lester had eerily similar outings, each yielding four runs over five innings while battling some control problems, but the Yankees ultimately prevailed against the Red Sox bullpen in a 6-4 victory.
The Yankee offense looked locked in for a second straight game, and even many of the team's outs were scorchers that were unfortunately hit right at fielders. Nick Johnson and Mark Teixeira were the only Yankees without hits for the second straight game, although in typical NJ fashion The Stick was on base three times, including a clutch bases-loaded walk that drove in the deciding run. Johnson's line through two games is a rather hilarious .000/.500/.000.
Other big hits included a big RBI double by A-Rod and a Robbie Cano no-doubter in the top of the ninth for a huge insurance run. Also, Curtis Granderson ripped a single off the southpaw Lester.
After blowing Sunday night's game, the Yankee bullpen got the job done last night, tossing four scoreless innings. Alfredo Aceves was great, as was Joba Chamberlain, who racked up two huge strikeouts in "teh eigt!!" and now will probably never be seen toeing the rubber in the first inning of a game ever again.
And of course, Mariano Rivera came in for the ninth and did what Mariano does best: get outs.
And so the Yankees picked up their first victory of the 2010 season in a game that appeared dangerously close to being yet another typical lead-trading, high-scoring Fenway affair (a.k.a. every game ever played at Fenway Park) before the Yankee 'pen put those fears to bed and sent Yankee fans home happy for the first of what we hope will be well over 100 more times.
- I know it's only two games, but Derek Jeter seems to be uncharacteristically swinging at an awful lot of first pitches. Would love to see DJ take some more pitches and work deeper counts.
- Can't say I ever thought I'd see the day where Brett Gardner was brought in to pinch-hit for someone else, but Gardy got another big hit last night. Marcus Thames, who started the game in left, also worked a walk off Jon Lester in the second.
- Kind of a shaky game for Mark Teixeira at the plate and in the field, although he just missed crushing a booming grand slam over the monster in the fifth.