Jorge Posada Prevails In Pinch-Hitting Appearance
After an absolutely embarrassing loss on Saturday, the Yankees needed a morale-boosting win in the last game against the Cleveland Indians. Going to the mound for the Indians was former laughing stock of New York—Carl Pavano.
When Pavano took the mound, it was almost surprising that he was still in one piece after his injury-plagued stint with the Yankees. But then he retired the side in order. It was the same story in the second inning...and then the third.
After yesterday's loss, it looked like the sour icing would about to be put on a very disgusting weekend cake for the the Yankees. Even though it was very early on, was it possible that Pavano was once again going to slap them in the face by pitching a perfect game?
The Captain put everyone's fears to rest, belting a one out double in the fourth. There was a cheer of relief from the stands as Derek Jeter stood on second. Even if the Yankees lost, at least Pavano wouldn't get the enjoyment and honor of pitching a perfect game against his former team.
In the meantime, A.J. Burnett threw 6.1 innings of three-run ball—all three runs came via the home run. Even though the Yankees were losing and Burnett didn't have the best control over his pitches, they were still in the game.
He was also backed by stellar defense by Mark Teixeira and Cody Ransom. Girardi took the ball from Burnett in the seventh inning with the bases loaded and only one out.
In came Jonathan Albaladejo. With a slow-roller to third, Ransom threw the ball to home, getting out the lead runner. The last out was even easier. As Burnett grinned and slapped Albaladejo on the back as he entered the dugout, the tone changed and the Yankees were re-energized.
In the eighth inning, they didn't waste any time getting to work. Robinson Cano belted a double and Hideki Matsui brought him home with a RBI single. Ransom tried to bunt him over to second but failed due to Matsui's lack of speed. As a result of a fielder's choice, Ransom was left standing on first.
Then came in Jorge Posada, pinch-hitting for Jose Molina. With a crack of the bat, controversy sparked. Right-fielder Trevor Crowe had his back against the wall, leaped, and saw the ball go over the wall by just a few inches and bounce back on the field. Initially ruled a home run but then the umpires gathered for a very rare instant replay.
It was a close call as to whether or not the ball went into the stands due to fan interference or if the ball went over the wall. Over eight minutes later, a final decision was made—the home run was upheld as the fans roared. Fans saw a familiar hero put the Yankees on top 4-3.
Brian Bruney retired the Indians in order in the eighth. With a bases loaded situation in the bottom of the inning, Ransom smacked a bases clearing double to put the finishing touches on a rewarding victory. It capped off a feel-good story, giving Ransom the spotlight to show off his offensive talent.
Not taking any chances, Mariano Rivera finished the game even though it wasn't a save situation.
Things are looking a little better for the second place A.L. East Yankees. With rain expected to interrupt Monday's game, the bullpen may finally get a rest. At the same time, coming off an exciting victory, the Yankees need to continue their momentum.
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