So this is life without Randy Winn…Phil Hughes (6-1, 2.70) was so fantastic Friday night vs the lowly Cleveland Indians. Hughes struck out 5 in a row to start the game and went 7 innings and allowed only 5 hits and 2 runs, with 8 K and only 1 walk. Believe it or not this Yankees Indians game was tight for 5 innings. Nick Swisher had hit a LONG HR in the 2nd, but this was a tight 2-1 game until the Indians let the flood gates open in the 7th.
For someone who is called an ace all the time, Indians starter Fausto Carmona hasn’t put up the stats to justify that title. Perhaps he’s frustrated the Indians GM Mark Shapiro dismantled the team a few years ago.
Robinson Cano, batting cleanup (#4) for the first time in his career due to A-Rod getting a rest (also called getting benched), hit a GRAND SLAM on the first pitch. Cano had 3 hits, Nick Swisher had 2 hits, and Derek Jeter had 2 hits. Just this week, I read 3 articles from respected sources that asked if Derek Jeter was DONE as a hitter. I think we know that Jeter is NOT DONE in 2010.
With Cano sparkling batting fourth, one has to wonder how Alex Rodriguez will react today; will he be more motivated?
Yankees backup catcher Chad Moeller hit a LONG foul ball. I told my wife that’s the closest he will come from getting a hit this year. Sergio Mitre and Chan Ho Park mopped up the 8-2 victory.
By the way, CC Sabathia (who will do great today) looked very happy and relaxed in the dugout Friday night, chatting with Andy Pettitte, Marcus Thames, Curtis Granderson (who looked good in his return), Jorge Posada, and Javier Vazquez. It was so nice to see the Yankees players in the dugout so happy and focused on the game. It’s so different than when Roger Clemens and Mike Mussina would not be in the dugout for all the games; these current Yankees pitchers are fans.
Paul O’Neil was a welcomed change in the YES Network booth, as Michael Kay is a fan of his, and Paulie is not a threat to Kay. (I maintain that Kay holds Al Leiter back by keeping him distracted.) For O’Nei,l being a color commentator is a fun part-time job that doesn’t keep him away from his family, and enables him to get back to the Bronx every now and then. He may not be the best announcer in the world, but he brings great stories to the table. He also speaks for Joe Torre’s dynasty and offered a nice perspective into how the team is run.
For example, Michael Kay asked why Joe Girardi won’t bat Derek Jeter 2nd, and have Brett Gardner or Curtis Granderson bat leadoff. O’Neil said that if Girardi sits Jeter down and asked him if he would do it, Jeter would say yes…BUT Girardi knows that veterans like to feel comfortable in their spot in the lineup and don’t want to change their swing or focus by switching. Therefore, Girardi wants to keep Derek comfortable and wouldn’t ask him to make the switch. It’s REAL explanations like this, which make Paul O’Neil enjoyable to listen to, as opposed to the theoretical nonsense Michael Kay harps on. For the record, Kay said he never played Little League because he was afraid of the ball.
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