The Yankees win 2-1. The Yankees win 2-1. The Yankees win 2-1. Yogi Berra would call it de ja vu all over again. One might call it "trey ja vu," as for the third day in a row the New York Yankees defeat a team wearing gray, black and orange by a count of 2-1. And by virtue of the BoSox tumbling Toronto/Texas two-step, there are now two teams atop the American League East with the league's best record to boot at 55-37.
Getting as far away from Anaheim as possible, the Yankees have stormed out of the gate and are now 4-0 in the second stanza of the season. On Saturday the Yanks won 2-1 and Sunday and Monday's games were not only of that same margin but were mirror images of each other. Granted Monday went off with a little more style.
Going back to Sunday it was three homers that accounted for every run, first off the bat of Detroit's Clete Thomas, then it was Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira for the Yanks. Moving onto Monday it was Baltimore's Nick Markakis with a blast, followed by the Yanks Eric Hinske and finally a walk-off job by Hideki Matsui to claim the 2-1 victory.
Another encouraging sign on the night was Andy Pettitte bouncing back and looking sharp after two dreadful starts against the Halos and Jays. Pettitte looked like the standout second half starter of old, going 7 1/3 innings allowing only the HR to Markakis while striking out eight along the way.
And sure all three of the game's runs came on homers, but most 2-1 games are decided by great defense. With no Mariano Rivera or Phil Hughes available, Joe Girardi turned the ball over to lefty Phil Coke with runners on two on and one out. Coke's pitch to Markakis was bounced to Teixeira who made an off-balanced throw to Jose Molina to nail Cesar Izturis. Then Coke delivered a bouncer to Molina, who threw out the O's Brian Roberts as he was breaking for home. Roberts missed the plate as Coke covered and applied the tag, keeping the game knotted at one going into the bottom of the 8th.After Al Aceves pitched out of more trouble, it was Matsui providing the heroics putting the Yankees back into a tie for first. Perhaps it'll be another 2-fer Tuesday for the Yanks tonight.