The previous New York Yankees game was presented in "CC." Carsten Charles for the hitting impaired. Of course there was another "C" involved in this game, don't 'cha know? And after the Yankees put a ten spot on the board, the joint in Tampa sounded like George M. Steinbrenner Field, but with a bunch of ugly catwalks.
CC Sabathia was an absolute beast and yes it was April not August. Still throwing major heat into the eighth, Sabathia got 23 outs before yielding his only hit to former Cleveland Indians battery-mate Kelly Shoppach, while striking out five along the way.
As far as at the plate and in the field, heck this entire game could've been brought to you by the letter "C."
Robinson Cano continuing to build on his hot start, in the fourth Cano clobbered a Wade Davis pitch to right to put the Yankees on the board and out front 2-0 for the only runs they'd need.
In the fifth Derek Jeter knocked in Brett Gardner and Mark Teixeira putting the American League on notice, doubled home Jeter for his second of three hits on the day to double the Yankees lead 4-0. More on Tex in a moment.
With two outs in the sixth and seventh, Sabathia still rolling along got some help from his corners. First it was Teixeira making a dive to his right, robbing Jason Bartlett to end the sixth frame. Then A-Rod made a diving stab down the line to his right and threw to Teixeira to retire the side and steal a hit away from B.J. Upton.
With the no-no intact, the Yanks offense went back to work and tore up the Rays bullpen. Teixeira and A-Rod appropriately enough started the eighth with hits. Then a Nick Swisher single loaded the bases for Curtis Granderson, who knocked in Tex against LEFTY Randy Choate. Gardner brought home A-Rod with a fielder's choice. And to cap off the four run rally was a booming two-run double by Francisco Cervelli, to make it 8-0 Yankees.
As an aside if you will, who isn't impressed with Frankie Cervelli's game calling abilities? I know it's still early, but if Nick Johnson doesn't hit, on days that Jorge Posada isn't catching, Joe Girardi might want to plug Jorge in the DH spot, especially against tough lefties and have Cervelli behind the plate. Cervelli is almost like Girardi but with more pop and I'd rather have Jorge's bat in there every day if possible.
Moving along though, Sabathia got the first two outs in the eighth before giving up a base knock to the aforementioned Shoppach. David Robertson would come on to finish it out, while the Yankees would get two more runs from Cano and Gardner to cap off the ten run rout of the Rays.Once again the Yanks try to take another rubber-match and another series after dropping the first game, as they try to get out of dodge to get their rings. If you think you've seen this movie before, well you have. The Yanks first series of 2009 in Tampa resulted in the Rays taking the first by firing a booming opening salvo and New York taking the next two. Although hopefully they don't need the mound services of Nick Swisher this time around.