The Yankees extended their win streak to an impressive eight games. Despite injuries to Nick Swisher, Andy Pettitte and Alex Rodriguez, the Yankees are the hottest team in baseball at just the right time. The best action happened in the 7th inning. Jose Bautista proved my long-held suspicion that he’s a jerk. He suffered a ‘roid rage break down and argued a called third strike vehemently in the top of the inning, and was deservedly ejected. The pitch was a ball, but Bautista responded to the call the way Jorge Posada did on Wednesday and was given the hook. In the bottom of the inning Marcus Thames hit a no-doubter off the Zales Diamond sign in the Yankee bullpen to break a 5-5 tie and give the good guys the lead. Mariano Rivera was Mariano Rivera in the 9th.
Javier Vazquez deserves to lose his rotation spot after today. He labored to get through 4.2 innings, ultimately allowing five runs to score. Reminiscent of his atrocious starts earlier in the season, Javy clearly didn’t want to throw his fastball. He allowed two Jose Bautista‘s, none actually to Jose Bautista.
Mark Rzepczynski wasn’t any better for the Blue Jays. He lasted only four innings, giving up five. From the 5th inning onwards it was a battle of the bullpens. Those have gone well for the Yankees of late. The Bomber bullpen allowed only three hits and no runs over 4.1 innings of work. Kerry Wood looked particularly dominating.
The win brings the Yankees’ season record to 86-50, and extends their win streak to a season high eight games. The division lead over Tampa is now a full two games, at least until the Rays pound the Baltimore Buck Showalters later tonight.