Hughes picks up first win: Yankees 4, Athletics 2

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Weather-wise today is probably one of the nicest days we’ve seen here in the Northeast so far in 2013 and baseball-wise, Phil Hughes easily had his best performance of 2013.

He pitched eight scoreless innings, gave up only four hits, walked two batters, struck out nine and 82 of his 118 pitches were strikes. Better yet, his velocity was hovering around the 93-94 mark in some spots. He pitched like a guy who had confidence in his stuff and after not lasting past the fourth inning in his first two starts, Hughes has lasted longer in his past four starts – today’s included. His shortest outing was his six innings against Toronto on April 28. The two starts prior, he pitched seven innings. He’s also striking out more batters. He had nine in his last start as well.

Offensively, the Yankees were aided by two home runs, one by Chris Stewart and the other by Lyle Overbay. I know, it’s really unbelievable what these guys are doing.…

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Athletics 2, Yankees 0: Knicks Win!

I’m sorry, I didn’t watch the Yankee game at all. I was too busy nearly having a heart attack watching the Knicks nearly blow a 26-point lead to the Boston Celtics.

Thankfully, they didn’t. They won their game and their series and have advanced to the second round to meet the Pacers.

As for the Yankees, nothing good happened in tonight’s game. Obviously, because they were shut out by a guy who had a 4.65 ERA coming into tonight’s game.

Not that ERA is the be all, end all of pitching stats but a 4.65 is still pretty terrible. CC Sabathia gave up a home run on the first pitch he threw and it didn’t get better for the Yankees after that.

But as they say, and as I’ve said many times before, on to the next one. And the next one is tomorrow afternoon when our old friend Bartolo Colon faces off against Phil Hughes.

Some notes:

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Quick recap: Yankees 5, Astros 4

This could have been a disastrous loss for the Yankees. Thankfully, they were able to overcome blowing a four-run lead and pick up a win against the Astros tonight. It marks their 17th win of the season and it’s their sixth win in their last seven games.

David Phelps started in place of injured Ivan Nova and made it through one turn before the Astros lineup figured him out and scored four runs in the top of the fourth inning. He allowed six base runners and even hit two batters during that inning.

The Yankees added an insurance run in the sixth inning on double play ground out by Ichiro Suzuki which scored Eduardo Nunez. Lyle Overbay was out at second but because he avoided a quick tag, Nunez scored before he was called out.

Robinson Cano and Ben Francisco hit home runs for the Yankees who have an off day tomorrow before a three-game series this weekend against the Oakland Athletics.…

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And all’s right in the world again: Yankees 7, Astros 4

I guess it’s a good thing this was a game against the Houston Astros because if the Yankees were facing another team, a better one, I’m not sure this win would have been possible.

Hiroki Kuroda, even though he didn’t give up any runs, had a rough first three innings and again, was lucky he was facing the Astros. He settled down and retired 11 of 12 batters after the third inning. He gave up only four hits in seven innings, walked four and struck out eight. He finished with 4-1 record in April and a 2.25 ERA. He’s 3-0 in his last three starts with a minuscule 1.23 ERA.

Another great stat for Kuroda from those last three starts? He’s averaging 7 1/3 innings.

The Yankees offense was able scratch and claw their way to some early runs and they had a 4-0 lead heading into the eighth inning when David Robertson came in. Robertson got two outs then gave up two runs on a home run by Chris Carter.…

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Astros 9, Yankees 1: Say what now?

That game was the pits. Do I have to rehash it? Really? Okay, fine.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • Andy Pettitte was awful.
  • So was the offense.
  • Vidal Nuno was pretty good even though it was in mop up duty.
  • Um…
  • Oh, Kevin Youkilis‘ MRI was negative. Not that it has anything to do with the game but I have to post something, I suppose.
  • Hmmm. What else?
  • Yep, I got nothing.

On to the next one as they say…

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Lyle Overbay powers Yankees to a sweep of the Blue Jays

R.A. Dickey was good. Lyle Overbay and Phil Hughes were better. Dickey gave the Blue Jays seven innings of four hit baseball. Normally that’s enough to get your team the victory, but not when two of those hits were homers. Brennan Boesch gave the Yankees their first run with a solo shot in the second inning. That was enough to keep the Yankees in the game until the seventh inning. With Travis Hafner on base Lyle Overbay hit a home run in the seventh frame to put the Yankees ahead three to two, the eventual margin of victory.

On the other side of the ledger, Phil Hughes was solid. Hughes struck out nine over six innings. He allowed just two runs even though he scattered seven hits. Hughes wasn’t efficient. He tossed 111 pitches over that time, but that’s what happens when you strike out so many batters. It was enough to keep the Yankees in a tight game until the offence could do its thing in the next inning.…

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Yankees 6, Blue Jays 4: My baseball people said David Phelps!

I jokingly referred to this game as a Friday night fright in the game thread, mainly because of the pitching matchup. I figured a game started by Ivan Nova and Aaron Laffey had the potential to be really awful. When Francisco Cervelli left the game with an injury about 37 seconds (give or take) into the game, I just shook my head. When Ivan Nova left the game in the third inning with an injury, I wanted to crawl into a hole.

What on earth is happening to this team? Can the training stuff just start lining people’s uniforms with bubble wrap? Thankfully, both of their replacements came up big.

Chris Stewart threw out some runners and walked twice tonight. As for David Phelps, all he did was come in, pitch four innings of relief and strike out nine batters. He picked up the win.

Of course, the Blue Jays’ usual suspects, Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Bautista, hit home runs – Encarnacion hit two: one off of Nova and the other off of Phelps but thankfully, the Yankees scored more.…

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Yankees 5, Blue Jays 3: M-M-M My Kuroda

(I apologize for the title. I’m tired.)

I know it’s early in the season and I know it may be too soon to say this but I’m going to say it anyway.

I love when the Yankees beat the Blue Jays. And do you know why that is? Because Blue Jays fans have become entirely too confident and a tad too obnoxious for me. Just because your team won the offseason doesn’t mean that will translate into wins in the regular season. Hello? Doesn’t anyone remember the 2012 Marlins? You know, the team the Blue Jays essentially traded for in November?

Jeez.

With that said, I do follow a lot of cool Blue Jay fans on Twitter and I don’t wish them any ill will.

All right, let’s get to the recap. This one started off on the wrong foot with Hiroki Kuroda having a rough first two innings.

He gave up a two-run home run to Edwin Encarnacion in the first and then a solo home run to Brett Lawrie in the second.…

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Quick recap: Rays 3, Yankees 0

Tropicana Field continues to be a house of horrors for the New York Yankees and I, for one, am thrilled this series is over and that the team is returning home even if it’s for a four-game series against the Toronto Blue Jays.

Tonight, Andy Pettitte was tough luck loser. He shut down the Rays until when fifth inning when he was victimized by a Brennan Boesch error and then by a Ben Zobrist double that made it 2-0 Tampa. And again in the sixth when Sean Rodriguez hit a solo shot to make it 3-0.

Pettitte’s final line was 6.0 IP, seven hits, three runs, two earned, one walk and 10 strike outs. Yes, 10. This is the first time he’s lost a game in which he’s struck out 10 or more batters since July 20, 2000 when he lost to the Tigers. He’s also had five no decisions in that span.

The Yankees offense was baffled by Alex Cobb who threw 8.1 innings, gave up only three hits, walked one and struck out seven.…

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