It was a tough night to be a baseball at Yankee Stadium. After a stretch of relatively low-scoring games, New York’s offense broke through, apparently trying to give CC Sabathia a month’s worth of run support in one night, and the Yankees split their four-game series with the White Sox, winning 12-3.
Mark Teixeira and Derek Jeter sat this one out, but it didn’t slow the offense any (not that… well, never mind, out of respect for Derek Jeter let’s leave it at that). Things completely unraveled for Edwin Jackson in the third inning, when he walked three batters in a row, and then four good measure a fourth – Nick Swisher, who got the RBI. One sac fly later it was 2-0 New York although at that point Edwin Jackson had a no-hitter going.
Frankly, I was surprised he was left in that long, along he did manage to get himself out of the inning with just two runs in, and recovered to pitch a clean fourth. In the fifth, he had the opposite problem he’d had in the second – now he was throwing strikes, but too much so. The first four batter Jackson faced there combined for a cycle – Brett Gardner homered, and as if that wasn’t unlikely enough Eduardo Nunez doubled, then Curtis Granderson tripled, and Swisher singled, scoring Granderson and finally driving Jackson out of the game. New pitcher Tony Pena (no relation) didn’t fare much better, as Robinson Cano singled, Alex Rodriguez doubled, and so on and so forth until Pena left with discomfort in his elbow. Will Ohman restored order, but by the time he got the third out twelve batters had come to the plate, and the Yankees left the inning with an 8-0 lead. The Yankees kept tacking on later, most notably via a Nick Swisher home run, his first of the year and clearly a weight off his shoulders. He and Ozzie Guillen famously did not get along well – I’ve never quite understood why, since Swisher seems plenty affable whatever else he is, but maybe he was less affable when he was hitting so poorly in Chicago. I imagine he particularly enjoyed breaking out of his slump while the Sox were still in town. A tree stump could have broken out of a slump tonight*, but still.
*No offense to Jorge Posada, who was 0-4.
As for Sabathia, he struggled a bit in the early going and had to pitch his way out of a few jams, but he kept the White Sox off the board until the seventh inning, after the game was essentially clinched, and pitched through the inning. Lance Pendleton took it from there, and did not even have to fall back on his hefty cushion of runs. Next up: Toronto, and the slightly less-than-marquee match-up of Ricky Romero and Freddy Garcia. As Ozzie Guillen said just the other night, baseball is crazy, so who knows what kind of game we might end up with?