Coming into tonight’s game, no one would have thought that Alex Rodriguez and Brett Gardner would be the ones to stop the bleeding to a Yankees 6 game skid, as they defeated James Shields (4-2) in a 6-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.
The game was tied going into the third when the Rays took a quick 1-0 lead over the Yankees with an Elliot Johnson home run, but the Yankees were quick enough to tie the game at one in the 4th after A-Rod hit it out, showing signs that the home run power was still there. A-Rod then homered again in the 6th inning. The Yankees scored 2 runs in the 6th giving them a 4-1 lead, helped by Jorge Posada’s 2 for 3 night and a beautifully placed bunt single by Brett Gardner. Yankees had gotten into a jam in the 6th when Ivan Nova (4-3) had the bases loaded which was when David Robertson was summoned from the bullpen. Robertson struck out both B.J Upton and Casey Kotchman preserving the Yankees lead by 3. The Yankees got two more in the 9th with a Russell Martin base hit, a Brett Gardner double and a Derek Jeter single which gave the Yankees a 6-1 lead.
In the 9th, the Rays stumbled into some trouble when Gardner made a catch, but wearily looked towards Curtis Granderson. The Rays thought that the ball hit the catwalk, which in Tropicana Field signifies a home run. Umpires took it to the video room and looked at the replay. The play was called an out and Gardner had made the catch. Rays scored 1 run in the 9th before turning the ball over to Mo who got former Yankee Johnny Damon to ground out, snapping the 6 game skid.
Note: This is Brett Gardner’s first 3 hit game this season. He raised his average to .265 surpassing Jeter, Teixeira, Rodriguez and Martin; After striking out three times, Jeter got a base hit, giving him 34 hits til 3,000; This is A-Rod’s first homer game since April 24th; After Saturday’s controversial day for Jorge Posada, he had a 2 for 3 night with a double and a single; Nick Swisher sat out tonights game with a stomach virus. Girardi said that Swisher was throwing up the night before which prompted Girardi to call up Chris Dickerson from AAA Scranton; Rafael Soriano was placed on the 15 day DL with elbow soreness. MRI’s were done and the tests shown inflammation. Soriano expects to start throwing in 10 days prior to coming off the DL.