Before a sparsely populated make-up crowd on Wednesday, the return of starting pitcher Andy Pettitte went strictly according to plan.
Making his first start for the New York Yankees since June 27th, when he went on the disabled list with a fractured ankle, he took full advantage of a poor Toronto Blue Jay lineup in the Yankee 4-2 win.
In five innings, the 40 year-old lefty allowed four hits, no runs, two walks and three strikeouts. He wasn’t as sharp as sharp can be, but nonetheless was durable and effective through 75 pitches.
Although Pettitte said he wasn’t overly concerned about pitch speed, his average fastball rested in the 88-90 mph range, which is just fine for his repertoire.
Throughout his abbreviated start, he managed to get into a few tough spots in the second, third and fourth innings. However, he was able to battle out of a couple first and third holes, as the Blue Jays managed to go 1-for-10 with men on base when Pettitte was pitching.
If the successful return to action wasn’t enough to hang his hat on, Pettitte moves up the ranks on the all-time win list. He's now in a four-way tie for 50th place with Dennis Martinez, Jack Powell, and Amos Rusie.
Overall on the day, Pettitte put together a B+ performance in his first game in nearly three months. Balls were hit hard and he found himself in early jams. But using a good combination of pitches, including a cutter consistently clocked in the 84 mph range, he was able to wiggle out of giving up any runs.
Overall on the day, the Yankees couldn’t have been happier with the final results. Andy is back on the mound being Andy. What more could they ask for.