Yankees 3 A’s 1: Wang Strong

I got to listen to a good deal of the Yanks game while compiling a lecture, and the Yanks got a huge boost from Wang, who pitched a gem and spared much of the bullpen.  Scattering 7 hits over 7 1/3 IP, Wang only threw 83 pitches/46 strikes, cutting down on the walks (2) and getting 15 of his outs via the ground ball.  A-Rod and Giambi supplied consecutive first-inning RBI singles, and Melky found his home run stroke in the ninth inning, albeit a game too late, adding a big insurance run for Mariano’s 17th save.  Although the Yanks stranded 8, 5 in scoring position, Wang’s excellent pitching made modest offense stand up.

It is important to note that Wang worked out of some trouble and the A’s remarkable ability to get the lead-off runner on in the first seven innings, primarily through getting four double plays.  He got an inning-ending 5-4-3 to escape a bases-loaded jam in the 7th, but also (if less dramatically) ended the third on a DP.  Wang stranded Ellis twice, first in the second after a lead-off double and then at third after a one-out double in the fourth.  He was on, making it one of those days as a fan when you know that he’s just a ground ball away from escaping.

Good thing, too, since the offense struggled for most of the game.  Though they cashed in on their chance in the first, the Yanks got few chances the rest of the way against lefty Dana Eveland.  After Abreu walked and A-rod singed with one out in the third, Giambi fanned and Jorge flew out to right.  Before hitting the big insurance homer in the ninth, Melky yet again made out with a failed bunt on which he slid into first base.  Why he has caught that bug again, I’ll never know, but it’s an incredibly stupid and always unsuccessful play.  Please, for the love of God Melky, stop it. At least he made up for it with the homer, a big blast to right off Keith Foulke “fastball'” mid-chest high and over the plate.  Veras wasn’t good, walking two in his 2/3 IP stint in the eighth, but Mariano shut it down with a lengthy (20 pitches) but successful ninth.  After four days of work in a row, Mariano must get a day off.

A-Rod was 2-4 with a run and his 32nd RBI, making up for lost time with the RBIs and his excellent .321 batting average.  Giambi was 1-3 with his 35th RBI, batting .257.  Abreu was 2-2 with 2 walks, batting .294. Melky’s solo shot was his seventh, with 28 RBIs, and he’s batting .269.  But Posada, Betemit, and Cano were a combined 0-11, and Jeter’s 0-4 lowers his average to .271.  But on the strength of Wang’s excellent start, the Yanks climb one mighty game above .500, and look to make it 2 games above .500 for the first time since they were 12-10, with Rasner (3-3, 2.58 ERA) taking on Justin Duchscherererererer (5-4, 2.32 ERA) in an HDLR game.

Published in: on June 11, 2008 at 11:02 am  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. watching veras was so painful last night that i aged at least 5 years. i don’t think i could have withstood a loss at that point. perhaps one could attribute the dead bats to the fact that they were facing another mediocre lefty that they manage to elevate to cy young proportions.

    see you tonight

  2. I think the decision to go to Veras was not a good one, Mike, regardless of the eventually benevolent outcome in the eighth. Wang’ss pitch count was low, he was throwing well. I would have left Wang in through the eighth unless he got into real trouble again.

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