The Joba-Swish Show

June 2, 2009 – 12:24 pm

Joba's Golden GloveNYY 5, Cleveland 2. The poor “put Joba in the bullpen” folks sure took a major hit with Joba Chamberlain’s performance last night. Allowing two runs over eight innings is exactly what you want out of a starter, and that’s what he delivered. Joba had all four of his pitches working, and the velocity on his fastball was actually increasing in the later innings. Not only that, he made what has to be the defensive play of the year, at least for a pitcher, when he did his “breaching whale” catch of Kelly Shoppach’s bunt in the 5th inning and then doubled up Ryan Garko at second. As funny as that was to watch, it highlighted what a great athlete Joba is.

Although Chamberlain grabbed most of the headlines, Nick Swisher was just as big in this win. The Yankees had a golden opportunity to win the game in the 6th with the bases loaded and no outs, but A-Rod, Posada, and Cano failed to deliver. Then in the very next inning they loaded the bases once again with no outs, but this time Swisher came through with a double off the left-field wall. Nick has now hit safely in 6 of the last 7 games, going 7-for-23 (.304) with 7 RBIs. He’s been the only weak spot in the lineup lately, so if he’s back in his early season groove, that gives the Yankees solid hitting throughout the order. Combine that with the starting pitching they are getting and the defense — which oh by the way just set the MLB record with 18 consecutive games without an error — and things really start to look good!

Photo: Newsday

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