This was a great win following yesterday’s 12-2 loss to Baltimore. Chien-Ming Wang wasn’t his sharpest today, but he pitched excellently, allowing 3 runs in 6 innings with only mediocre stuff. My reason for thinking that he had only mediocre stuff is based on the ground outs-to-fly outs ratio, which was 6-to-10. On a good day the ground outs would outnumber the fly outs. He also missed the strike zone about as often as he hit it, throwing 41 of his 90 pitches for balls and walking four. Two of those walks were intentional though. Are the pitches in an intentional walk added to the pitch count? Despite not having his A-game, Wang was fantastic in keeping this nuisance of a Red Sox lineup at bay. And they really can be a nuisance. They’re chock full of tough outs and patience. The Red Sox lead the majors in walks with 502. The Reds are second with 470. The Red Sox are also in second place in the majors in runs scored. So for Wang to allow 7 hits, 6 of which were doubles, and minimize the damage to 3 runs is deserving of a W and a lot of clapping. Way to get ’em Chien-Ming Wang!
And in addition to that, the offense that mysteriously slept in yesterday showed up in bunches today, starting off with a Damon triple and a Jeter RBI single. Productive days at the plate were had by many. Damon was 3-for-6 with 4 RBIs. Jeter was 3-for-6 with 2 runs scored. Abreu was 4-for-5 with a double and a run scored. Giambi was 2-for-4 with 3 RBIs, and both those hits were singles. A-Rod was 2-for-5 with 2 RBIs. Cano was 2-for-6 with 2 RBIs and a stolen base. Every starting player scored at least once. And we only hit one homer. 12 runs on patience and simple hitting. It’s refreshing to see a dozen runs without the thumpers going yard a couple of times.
But all wasn’t cakes and ice cream. We did strand 12 runners on base. I attribute that to the number of walks and hits we were getting. It’s an impressive sign when you can score 12 runs while leaving 12 other potential runs on base. I was seething after we only scored one run in the first inning. With Jeter and Abreu at 2nd and 1st and no outs, Giambi popped out, A-Rod popped out and Cano grounded out. Then we go down 1-2-3 in the second inning. We again go quietly with only a walk and a stolen base to our credit in the third inning. In the fourth inning an A-Rod lead off single was wasted when Posada grounded into a double play. It was the fifth inning when we really took off. And after an uneventful sixth inning, we jumped on Snyder and Delcarmen for four runs following an error by Lowell that allowed Jeter to reach first. And then four walks and a couple hits in the ninth inning enabled the Yankees to effectively call this game over. We were slow to start putting hits together, but when we did, we did it often. Like I already said, it feels good to do this after scoring only 2 runs in consecutive games to the Orioles. We haven’t scored in double digits since July 15th against the White Sox.
I’m glad we were able to use as few bullpen arms as we did. After getting 7 outs in his longest appearance of the season in yesterday’s game, Myers produced a tailor made ground out for the Big Papi. And then Proctor pitches 1 2/3 scoreless innings. He really is incredible. And we are so fortunate to have him. He’s quickly becoming one of my favorite Yankees. And T.J. Beam pitched the ninth to save Mo, Farnie and Villone for the rest of the series. Thank you T.J.! I’m thinking that Torre won’t jeopardize our chances at winning the series by throwing everything we have to win tonight’s game. It probably would be most beneficial to save Farnsworth and Villone for Saturday through Monday. This is going to be one long series. I’m betting we’ll see Dotel and Wilson tonight.