Toronto Blue Jays

New York Yankees Win Series as Phil Hughes Looks Good

Frank NegronAnalyst IApril 3, 2008

The first series of the season is over and for the Yankees, it was a good one.

The Yanks defeated the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 on Thursday night at Yankee Stadium. Phil Hughes looked good in six innings of work while manager Joe Girardi played small ball in order to pick up his second win of the year.

In the bottom of the 8th, Melky Cabrera led off with a single to right, then Johnny Damon pulled off a sac bunt. But because Toronto reliever Scott Downs couldn't hold on to the ball, Damon was safe at first as a result of the error.

Next up was Derek Jeter who also bunted and got Cabrera and Damon into scoring position. Bobby Abreu wasted little time as he got a bloop single to score the eventual winning run.

Hughes allowed two runs on four hits in six innings of work to go along with four strikeouts. Not a bad outing for the 21-year-old Hughes. His curveball seemed to dance all over the strikezone tonight, a good sign indeed.

“Phil Hughes was ready when he got to camp, and he wanted to grab a hold of this role,” Girardi said.

The Yanks also got to use Joba Chamberlain in the 8th and Mariano Rivera in the 9th to secure the win, the same relief combination used on opening night.

The Blue Jays had the tying run on third base in the 9th, but Rivera struck out the final batter to win the game for New York.

Next up for the Yanks, the Tampa Bay Rays, for a four-game series. With the fireworks set off by these two teams during spring training, this series should be something to watch.

(Frank's articles can also be found at OnTheBlockNY and HotStoveNewYork.com)

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