This one looked like a laugher until the ninth inning, when the Royals brought the tying run to third base with two outs. CC Sabathia had been cruising, throwing 8 2/3 innings of one-run ball before David Robertson allowed his two inherited runners to score, marring Sabathia's final line. Thankfully, after surrendering two straight hits, Robertson was able to strike Jason Kendall out on a nasty curve, securing the Yankees' 4-3 victory.
Despite giving up 10 hits Sabathia was awesome in this game, preventing the Royals from mounting any rallies -- until the ninth, anyway -- and picking up 14 groundouts along the way, including two big inning-ending double plays. This was actually the deepest Sabathia pitched into a game all year, and he only needed 110 pitched to do it. Not only that, but CC was chucking absolute gas last night -- I don't know if the gun was juiced, but Sabathia hit 98(!) on several occasions during the proceedings. There is no pitcher on the staff more fun to watch pitch than Sabathia, and I imagine a lot of Yankee fans feel similarly.
The Yankee offense banged out 10 hits but only had four runs to show for their troubles, two of which came on outs. Curtis Granderson and his supposed new swing picked up two hits and drove in the first run of the game; Nick Swisher had three hits; and Austin Kearns had two of his own, including his first home run as a Yankee. Kearns also blasted a single, and it's pretty clear that the man does not get cheated at the plate -- his bat speed's pretty impressive, and I look forward to more good things from Austin.
The win increased the Yankees' lead over the Rays and Red Sox to two games and six games, respectively. The Yanks need to keep rolling over the Royals as the Rays get Baltimore this weekend (although the O's seem to be playing with a bit more fire since Buck Showalter took over, eh?), though fortunately Boston should have its hands full with Texas.