The Yankees finished their nine-game road trip with a 5-4 record as they return to the Bronx tonight for a three-game series against the Mets. (It is supposed to rain today so we just may be looking at a double-header tomorrow.) Javier Vazquez gave up a two-run homer in the first and that was all the Orioles would get for the duration of the game. Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter both hit two-run dingers of their own and Kenny Lofton had a nifty assist in the seventh inning which proved to be the defensive play of the game. (By the way, not for nothing, but Bernie Williams actually had an assist the night before…though throwing out old man Raffie isn’t exactly something to write home about; that’s probably why I neglected to mention it yesterday.)
Coupled with a Red Sox loss, the Yankees are now five-and-a-half games ahead of the Bostons. The Twins won in ten innings, aided in part by a critical error by Nomar Garciaparra. As Tony Massarotti notes, Boston is 25-25 in their last 50 games. The Yankees scored a moral victory of sorts against the Sox yesterday as well when Carlos Beltran was traded to the Astros and not to Boston (shows you how much I know). Houston moved Octavio Dotel to Oakland, which should help a lousy bullpen plenty.