I am a huge fan of good pitching, but I have to admit - there is nothing like witnessing an offensive explosion. Lucky for me, yesterday's game had both. Javier Vazquez dominated on the mound, and his offense owned the Astro pitching in the 9-3 Yankee win.
After Vazquez made it through the 1st inning unscathed, Derek Jeter stepped up to the dish to lead off for the Yanks. He pulled a pitch from Wandy Rodriguez for a leadoff home run. I love seeing Jeter go deep. He has 232 career home runs, which is surprising because I don't think of him as a power hitter. Power hitter or not, Jeet is a 1st-ballot Hall of Famer.
Speaking of Hall of Famers, after Nick Swisher drove in Jeter and the bases became loaded, future Hall of Famer Jorge Posada came up to bat in the 3rd. Jorge has been struggled mightily since his activation off the disabled list. I think this slump ended yesterday. Posada launched the 0-1 pitch the other way into the right field stands, for a grand slam. Yankees lead 6-2.
Javy surrendered 2 runs early on a Pence home run and Keppinger RBI double, but settled down nicely after that. The only other run he allowed was on a solo homer by Carlos Lee. Those were the only blemishes on his outing. Vazquez was superb, throwing 7 innings of 3-run, 6-hit ball. He struckout 6, didn't walk a batter, and never faced more than 5 batters in an inning, minimizing the damage. This is the Javier the Yankees wanted.
In the 6th, my darling Francisco Cervelli led off the inning with a walk, followed by a walk to Curtis Granderson. Derek Jeter came up, and I was reminicsing about his home run, thinking "Jeez, this guy always goes the other way, and yet he can still be quick and pull for a home run. He's amazing." Right as I thought this, I saw his patented Jetarian, inside-out swing, and was astonished once again. This time, he went the other way for a 3-run home run. 9-3 Yankees lead. 9-3 Yankees win.
There were many positives in yesterday's game, aside from the fact that the Yankees won the series. Posada may finally be back to his old self. Vazquez pitched another quality game. David Robertson and Chad Gaudin pitched scoreless innings. And Jeter - he's still being Jeter.
Let's hope this keeps up.
by Virginia Califano
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