• Better All the Time

    Although the larger story may have been that the Yanks swept the Twins in three games to win the 2010 ALDS in Yankee Stadium 6-1 on Saturday night, for Phil Hughes the bigger aspect may have been a more personal one. Exactly one year ago, the Twins put an ugly inning on Phil at the worst possible time, and although to all accounts he seems to be a pleasant young man, he really seemed to have enjoyed the chance to get back this time around.

    A Yankee bullpen stalwart in 2009, Phil took a 1-1 tie he was handed after seven innings on October 9 in Game 2 of the ALDS and promptly turned it into a 3-1 Yankee deficit. Although Phil got two quick outs, a walk and three straight singles gave the visitors the late lead, and if not for some great late bat work from Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira, the 2009 Yankee postseason might not have been the magical ride we all experienced and loved.

    The Yankee offense was plenty in evidence this Saturday as well, with a Robbie Cano triple, rbi singles from Jorge Posada and Teixeira and a Marcus Thames home run staking Phil to a good lead through four frames. But who's to say what kind of damage the Twins could have caused had they been able to do what they had done in the first two games of this series in Minnesota: grab an early lead?

    But that was one thing Phil was determined would not happen. With his much-hoped-for change up not much in evidence, Phil pounded a low-nineties fastball and an effective 75-mph curve to four swinging strike outs and 13 outs from the first 13 Twins batters on just 47 pitches. When Denard Span, the lone Twins batter in this game who had reached Phil for a key single a year ago, led off the top of the fourth with a single, Phil's first-pitch cutter to Orlando Hudson produced an instantaneous 6-4-3. A Jim Thome walk and singles from Delmon Young, Hudson, and Joe Mauer highlighted mini Twins rallies in the top of the fifth and sixth, but in each case Phil coaxed swinging strike outs to escape, against Michael Cuddyer in the fifth and Jason Kubel in the sixth.

    The nine pitches it took to retire the Twins on two grounders to second and a fly in the seventh represented the third time it took Hughes single-digit pitches to close out an inning and, when Nick Swisher responded with a leadoff home run in the bottom half, the Yanks had a 6-0 lead. Even if the just 12 of 25 first-pitch strikes was a disappointing number, Hughes's 67-33 strikes-balls ratio was textbook, he allowed just one walk to go with the six swinging Ks, and all four safeties he allowed were one-base hits.

    With newly established eighth-inning guy Kerry Wood stumbling through a three-hit, one walk outing, the Yankee pen was reached for a Minnesota run in the eighth. The Yankee scoreboard displayed the stat that the Twins had scored no runs vs. Mariano Rivera in 15 and two-thirds innings going in tonight. It stands at 16 and two-thirds now after a 12-pitch, one-strike-out ninth closed this one out at 6-1 Yankees 16 minutes before midnight.

    Robbie Cano, whose leadoff second-inning triple got the Yanks going, had two hits and scored two; Marcus Thames homered for two and had two hits; and Derek Jeter and Nick Swisher had two hits each as well. And by stroking his 41st postseason rbi with a single in the second, Jorge Posada passed Mickey Mantle for ninth place on the all-time postseason rbi list.

    Seventy years ago this day, the world was blessed with the birth of one of the few true geniuses of his generation when former Beatle John Lennon was born. Witnessing Phil Hughes's dominance Saturday night one year after struggling vs. the Twins in the ALDS exactly one year ago, I have to agree with these words from the Lennon/McCartney hit from 40 years ago:

    I have to admit it's getting better
    Getting better all the time.


    BTW,TYW
    YANKEE BASEBALL!!!
  • Recent Forum Posts

    flymick24

    Re: Brian Cashman Performance Thread 2.0

    To think cashman didn't at least engage beane would be foolish... Ultimately, it comes down to which players beane wanted, and for all we know, it could

    flymick24 Today, 02:12 AM Go to last post
    Yankees1962

    Re: Yoan Moncada Thread

    Why do you say there is bickering? I just see it as a difference of opinion. As to Moncada, I wonder if the Yankees are targeting more than him in the

    Yankees1962 Today, 02:11 AM Go to last post
    flymick24

    Re: Yoan Moncada Thread

    I can't wait until they sign Moncada so that all this bickering stops and we can all get into a circle jerk

    flymick24 Today, 02:09 AM Go to last post
    Zimmers' Helmet

    Re: Yoan Moncada Thread

    You're a joke - you won't address me directly so you do it through others.
    I thought you promised to put me on your ignore list - at the very

    Zimmers' Helmet Today, 01:43 AM Go to last post
    Yankees1962

    Re: 2015 Offseason moves

    Cashman doesn't need any excuses as it appears he has the complete confidence of his owner which is why, he'll be the Yankees GM for 20 years after this

    Yankees1962 Today, 01:37 AM Go to last post
    dabomb2045

    Re: 2015 Offseason moves

    I dont know how much I buy into that theory. I think it has occurred in the past on certain occassions. The one that comes to mind is how Colangelo

    dabomb2045 Today, 01:29 AM Go to last post