The CC and Godzilla Show

May 15, 2009 – 9:54 am

NYY 3, Toronto 2. Yesterday it was the rookies leading the way, today it was the veterans. In a good old-fashioned pitchers’ duel it was Derek Jeter getting the game-tying hit and Hideki Matsui hitting the game-winning home run. The big difference in the game was bullpen management. When Brian Tallet struggled in the top of the 7th, Cito Gaston went in to mix-and-match mode, and it paid off nicely — for the Yankees. Jason Fraser immediately blew the save, then three outs later Jesse Carlson lost the game. Thank you, Cito. Meanwhile, in the bottom of the 7th when CC Sabathia struggled a bit, Joe Girardi stuck with him and sure enough CC did what he had been doing for the previous 6 innings — shut the Jays down. Then Girardi finished the game the way you are supposed to — let CC complete 8 innings and then turn it over to Mariano Rivera. So kudos to Girardi for managing his pitchers the right way. Of course he probably did it only because his bullpen is so terrible right now that he had no other choice. But then again, maybe he’s learning? Anyway, it all ended with a good win for the Yankees and another very good start for CC. CC now seems to be in the groove as the #1 starter, and that’s very good news.

The only dis-heartening item in the game was a continued lack of punch from the middle of the lineup. In the 7th after Jeter had tied the game, the Yankees had runners on first and second with no outs and the 2-3-4 hitters coming up. In that situation you have to plate the go-ahead run. But alas, Damon took a called third strike and then Teixeira and Rodriguez flew out. You can hardly blame Damon as he’s more than contributed his share of offense lately — but Tex and A-Rod continue to be a problem. Teixeira has shown some signs of breaking out of his slump, and A-Rod of course is probably still a bit rusty from coming off his injury. Let’s hope both of them start hitting like we know they can in the upcoming homestand.

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