Teixeira Homers in Second Straight Game
By Howard Goldin
BRONX, NEW YORK, JUNE 5- The Yanks rebounded after losing their last two series, Mets and Red Sox, by capturing the first two games of a three game set with the Cleveland Indians on Tuesday night.
The pitchers on each team put zeros on the scoreboard in every inning but one. The impressive performance of David Phelps was a far cry from his last start six days ago against the Mets when he gave up five runs in 0.1IP. Of that prior start Phelps told reporters, “I tried to forget about that start as much as I could.”
Phelps blanked the Indians for six innings. The only hit he allowed was an infield single by Drew Stubbs in the third. His control was less effective as he issued four bases on balls. After the contest, he commented, “I was all over the place. I was fortunate to get the pitches when I needed them.” He gave credit to his experienced batterymate, Chris Stewart for his successful outing.
With the exception of his brief debacle against the Mets, Phelps has gone 3-1 and pitched at least six frames in his last five starts.
Three Cleveland runs came in the seventh inning off reliever Joba Chamberlain. Chamberlain walked Carlos Santana, the first batter he faced. After the next two batters were retired, Mike Aviles singled and Stubbs homerd to drive in three.
The four runs the Yanks scored in the third off Cleveland starter Scott Kazmir were sufficient to ensure the victory. The first five Yankee batters hit safely. Lyle Overbay led off with a double. Stewart followed by a single but was caught in a rundown between first and second, yet Overbay could not score. A single to left by Ichiro Suzuki knocked in Overbay. Jayson Nix followed with a single and Mark Teixeira blasted a three run homer into the seats in left. The home run was his second in the last two games.
Yankees skipper Joe Girardi remarked regarding his returned first baseman, “He’s an RBI machine. It’s great to see him productive from both sides.” Teixeira explained his batting strategy since his return, “Being aggressive, committing to my swing, getting good pitches to hit.”
The Yankee win was saved by legendary closer Mariano Rivera, who retired all three opposing batters in the ninth. Rivera now has 21 saves in 2013 and 629 career saves. The save was his 38th straight at Yankee Stadium and his 19th straight against Cleveland.
On Tuesday afternoon, the Yankees are sending C.C. Sabathia (5-4) to the mound to hopefully achieve the win. Cleveland will counter with righty Corey Kluber (3-3).