Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Yankees Ride Back to Back to Back Home Runs to 8th Straight Victory (Postgame Notes 20 May 2009)

When things go right, they really go right.

For instance, today was likely Phil Hughes' last start before Chien Ming Wang comes back to the rotation. He needed to impress.

So he struck out nine in five innings while only walking one.

Nick Swisher had been slumping something awful at the Stadium.

So he hit a home run, which was only the first of three back-to-back-to-back home runs that the Yankees hit in the second inning, each getting progressively bomb-ier.

After Hughes' short outing the Yankees needed a good performance from the middle relievers.

So Alfredo Aceves and Phil Coke combined to throw two and two-thirds scoreless innings (with some help from Johnny Damon).

After Mariano Rivera got the last out in the eighth, Yankees fans were praying for an insurance run or two so that Mo didn't have to sweat the ninth.

So the Yankees scored six runs in the bottom of the inning--and every runner to reach scoring position in the inning scored.

And then Mo pitched the ninth, anyway, saving Albaldejo, Bruney, Tomko and Veras for another day.

Add it all together and the Yankees have won eight straight, with the guarantee that they will gain on somebody as Toronto and Boston are also doing battle (and it looks like Boston will win).

The Yankees have guaranteed themselves a winning record on the homestand, which could be important as Philadelphia, which comes to town on Friday, is not exactly a pushover.