Saturday, July 26, 2008

Eight Wins Up (Postgame Notes 26 July 2008)

In the first inning, Andy Pettitte simply could not get a pitch called a strike.

Boston pushed two runs across before the Yankees had their second at bat, and they were looking for more.

...and still, the Yankees won.

In terms of the games that the Yankees have pitched since the All Star Break, it wasn't the prettiest, but Pettitte got stronger as the game went on, and, as a true showcase of how good the bullpen has become, when Jose Veras struggled in the seventh, Joe Girardi went to Dàmaso Marte, Edwar Ramirez and David Robertson. The three did not allow another hit.

In fact, one may look at today's game as indictive of the differences between the Yankees' bullpen situation and that of the Red Sox.

Consider the statistics:

Yankee bullpen: 3 IP, 1 H, 2 BB, 3 K, 0 ER
Red Sox bullpen: 3.2 IP, 5 H, 3 BB, 3 K, 4 ER

In trading for Marte, the Yankees have made a strength stronger and kept the Red Sox from addressing what is probably the weakest part of their ball club.

More good news about today's win?

Today's offensive effort--ten runs in what is technically a come-from-behind win--means that the Yankees don't have to be concerned about the fact they only went 1-9 with RISP last night.

In fact, Bobby Abreu, Johnny Damon, Jason Giambi and Robinson Canò all had two out RBI (Canò had two and three RBI on the day).

Whatever this Yankee team is, the team it was in the first half is not it.

The starting pitching is giving them a chance to win every game, the offense is, post break, scoring 6.12 runs a game (read: what they were supposed to do all season) and the bullpen is phenomenal.

On July 6, the Yankees were nine games out of the division lead.

Today, on July 26, they are tied in the loss column with Boston for the Wild Card lead.

Everyone has said that if the Yankees were going to make a move, that it has to be now, this month.

That is precisely what they have done.

The Yankees will try to close out the series tommorrow evening. Whatever happens, the Yankees can rest a little easy knowing that no matter what they have taken two out of three from Boston at Fenway.

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