Sunday, April 28, 2013

CC Stops Blue Jays

By Howard Goldin

BRONX, NEW YORK, April 28-On Saturday, for the first time in two weeks, a crowd of over 40,000 came to Yankee Stadium to see the to see the Yanks play. The beautiful day, sunny skies and temperatures in the mid-60’s, was made more beautiful for the 40,258 in attendance by the third consecutive victory of the Yanks over the Blue Jays. To add to the excitement, each was a come from behind win.

As is usually the case, the Yankees bullpen gets an undue respite when Sabathia is the starting pitcher. Sabathia pitched eight innings on Saturday despite not being in command of his best stuff. In 2013, Sabathia has pitched eight innings in three of his six starts and hurled seven innings or more in five of the six.

The perseverance of Sabathia on the mound is not a new phenomenon Last year, Sabathia pitched at least seven frames in 19 of his 28 starts.

The veteran left hander threw 80 of his 112 pitches for strikes. He has not exceeded that number in 2013 and only bettered it in four of 28 starts in 2012, He did not walk a batter in the game, a feat he only reached one other game this season.

After the contest concluded, Yankees manager Joe Girardi heaped praise upon his ace starter, “We needed a big performance out of CC. We needed distance and we got it. He finds a way to get it done. I didn’t think he was as sharp today as he’s been in April. The way he competes when he doesn’t have his stuff is what impresses you the most.”

Sabathia earned his fourth win of 2013on Saturday, April 27, the first time he has won four in the first month of the season, Sabathia is in his 13th big league season.

Four of the five Yankees runs were driven in by the designated hitter, Travis Hefner. In a rare start against a lefty, Hafner came through. Trailing 3-0 in the bottom of the fourth, the first two batters, Vernon Wells and Kevin Youkilis walked. Hafner took a 2-1 pitch from R.A. Happ into the right field seats to tie the score.

“Yankees killer” Brett Lawrie hit a solo homer in the sixth to give Toronto a 4-3 advantage.

The final two runs were scored in the bottom of the seventh. Robinson Cano doubled. He scored on a single by Wells. The winning run, Wells, was driven across the plate on a triple by Hafner.

The Yankees will attempt to achieve a four game sweep over Toronto on Sunday afternoon. Phil Hughes (0-2) will start for New York against R. A. Dickey (2-3) for Toronto. As a Met, Dickey was the National League Cy Young Award winner.

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