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Old Man Pettitte Pitches like Young Man Pettitte

Saturday…in the Park.

Nick Swisher is the kind of player who shouldn’t be left to his own devices. After driving home Robinson Cano in the second inning with a double, Swisher came to bat in the fourth after Alex Rodriguez (dhing for the day) and Cano started the inning with base hits. So Swisher laid down a sacrifice bunt, taking the bat out of his and Curtis Granderson’s hands. The sacrifice worked, then the Angels walked Granderson to load the bases for Ramiro Pena and Frankie Cervelli. Pena, who played third and made a terrific diving catch, whiffed but Cervelli bailed Swisher out of a trip to the doghouse with a little single to left, scoring two runs.

Derek Jeter followed with a well-struck RBI single to center and the Yanks had a 4-0 lead, more than enough for Andy Pettitte as the Yanks cruised to a 7-1 win.

There was no hangover from Friday night’s contentious game. Pettitte was in control. His line: 8 innings, 6 hits, 1 run, 8 strikeouts and 0 walks. Leave it to Torii Hunter to have the line of the day when he told reporters:

“I’ve never seen Pettitte pitch this well,” Hunter said. “He looked poised. He looked like the Andy Pettitte of old, when he was young.”

…”The last two times Pettitte pitched against us, that’s about as good as we’ve seen him,” [Manager, Mike] Scioscia said. “He’s taken a sip from the Fountain of Youth or something. He really pitched well.”
(L.A. Times)

Damaso Marte pitched a scoreless ninth. Brett Gardner stayed hot with three more hits and Cano had four hits and scored three runs. The slumping Mark Teixeira had one hit and Nick Johnson had the day off due to a cranky back.

The Yanks have a chance to win the series later this afternoon when Javy Vazquez takes the mound.

[Photo Credit: Stephen Dunn/Getty Images]


1 RIYank   ~  Apr 25, 2010 8:24 am

I'm happy Andy's pitching so well, but I think Scioscia and others are exaggerating (or just not very good at this sort of thing). Joe Buck said it might be the best game he's ever seen Pettitte pitch. But plenty of balls were hit pretty hard -- he got good fielding and a little luck. He did pitch a good game, just not a great one.

Andy's BABIP is .269 this year, that's part of what's made him look so good. I don't mean to be Debbie Downer, just warning against toooptimism.

2 Alex Belth   ~  Apr 25, 2010 8:46 am

Agreed. Let's not get crazy now. He's pitching well. But Roy Halladay, he's not.

3 Dimelo   ~  Apr 25, 2010 9:28 am

[1] That's what I thought, there were a number of hard-hit balls yesterday.

Perfect Sunday morning. Rainy, ugly, and a chilly bedroom.

4 Alex Belth   ~  Apr 25, 2010 9:40 am

3) It is a soup-is-good-food day in NYC.

5 Dimelo   ~  Apr 25, 2010 9:42 am

[4] And some spicy Thai in the evening.

6 jeaner   ~  Apr 25, 2010 10:55 am

Nick Johnson has an owie? Oh, how rare and horrible for him.

7 The Hawk   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:20 am

Clutch Robbie Cano and Gardner ripping a triple to right ... If this is a dream, don't wake me up!

8 Sliced Bread   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:20 am

I missed the game. Did Swish clearly sacrifice, or did he try to bunt for a base hit? Sac would be the wrong move, but I wouldn't criticize him for trying to bunt himself on if the infielders were playing him deep. Also, was it definitely his decision to bunt? Not Girardi's?

9 Alex Belth   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:22 am

8) It was a sac. Ken Rosenthal later reported that Nick was saying his prayers on the bench hoping they'd score after that stunt...

10 williamnyy23   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:24 am

[1] Pettitte's BABIP for all of 2009 was also pretty low at .297 (it's .276 now), so luck is not the only reason for his early hot start. What has made him so good so far are more Ks, no HRs and an increased GB rate. All three of those things are within the control of the pitcher, so he IS doing something to produce these results. Now, whether he can keep doing it is another question. Then again, to be successful, he doesn't really need to be this good.

11 Sliced Bread   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:28 am

[9] oy, Swish. Hopefully a lesson learned there.

12 Raf   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:34 am

Awesome photo. Love baseball photography.

[11] Hope so too. Not sure about the insistence of bunting with Swisher, be it him on his own, or ordered by Girardi.

13 ms october   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:36 am

[10] obviously sss applies here, but his walks are down a bit too (having none yesterday really helped out in yesterday's game) - he is at 2.9 bb/9 so far this year compared to 3.5 for last year. i doubt his whip stays at 1.071 all year, but anything near that and he has a great season.

there were some hard hit balls yesterday that could have been hits though, so there was a tad bit of good luck yesterday.

14 Diane Firstman   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:36 am

Swisher drops a bunt?
Scooter rolls in grave ... again.
Hope Nick learned lesson

15 ms october   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:38 am

[11] [12] yeah it thought swish is not a bunter was settled last year. then yesterday he lays down a "successful" sac bunt of his own decision - i just hope it doesn't give girrardi ideas to have him sac bunt more frequently going forward.

16 Yankee Mama   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:45 am

What I liked about Pettitte yesterday was that he was locating really well. He got a lot of first call strikes, he moved deftly between the outside and inside corners and there were also a fair share of swing and misses. He also worked quickly and efficiently.

Yeah, he put some hard hit balls into play, but defense is there for a reason.

Was it his best outing ever? Nah. Was it enjoyable? Yeah.

Swisher- Not a rocket scientist.

17 Diane Firstman   ~  Apr 25, 2010 11:53 am

Speaking of streaks, the Yankees can set a franchise record if they beat the Angels in Anaheim Sunday. A win would give New York its sixth consecutive series victory to start the season, passing the franchise mark set by the 1926 Yankees, as the Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J., reports.

18 ms october   ~  Apr 25, 2010 12:00 pm

[17] diane do you know what the mlb record is for series wins to start the season?

19 Diane Firstman   ~  Apr 25, 2010 12:09 pm

I would ASSUME its Tigers 35-5 start .... but have no idea.

20 Diane Firstman   ~  Apr 25, 2010 12:13 pm


Tigers lost series #9 in 1984 season, and had split a 2-game series earlier in that run.

21 RIYank   ~  Apr 25, 2010 12:15 pm

[19] They lost two out of three to Boston, May 1 and May 2.
It can be hard to count "series". The '84 Tigers played one game at Fenway on April 13th, then didn't play again until the 18th. I guess there was a lot of rain in Boston.

22 RIYank   ~  Apr 25, 2010 12:15 pm

Ah, there ya go.

23 Diane Firstman   ~  Apr 25, 2010 12:18 pm
24 Diane Firstman   ~  Apr 25, 2010 12:26 pm

Back in 1946, there were many more 2-game series, but Boston didn't LOSE a series till June!

25 ms october   ~  Apr 25, 2010 12:29 pm

thanks diane.

26 Just Fair   ~  Apr 25, 2010 12:48 pm

Good game. Swisher is fool. Dig this catch by Austin Jackson.

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