“We’re just swinging the bats well,” said Yankee skipper Joe Girardi to the press after the game.
“It started in Baltimore, and our guys have stepped it up. It’s a combination of a bunch of things.”
The Bronx Bombers batted around in the top of the fourth inning, scoring half of their 10 runs.
Derek Jeter started the Yankees off with a two-run single in the frame to score Nick Swisher and Hideki Matsui, extending his current hitting streak to 13 games.
Johnny Damon threw in an RBI single to score Brett Gardner, and Robinson Cano added another two-run single to scratch Damon and Mark Teixeira across the plate.
In the top of the second inning, Jorge Posada smashed a solo home run to right, his sixth homer of the year and first round tripper since May 2.
Swisher followed Posada later in the frame with a homer of his own, taking Cleveland hurler Fausto Carmona deep to center field, a shot good for his 10th home run on the year.
Damon gave the Yanks another run in the top of the sixth with a groundout to first allowing Gardner to score, and Cano and Matsui padded the lead in the ninth, each contributing with an RBI double to complete the Yankee offense on the night.
“We’ve been playing well and pitching good,” Jeter said to the YES Network after the game.
“A lot of credit goes to the pitching staff.”
CC Sabathia took the mound tonight, and turned in a good outing against his former team. He went seven innings, and gave up three earned runs on five hits. He walked three and struck out eight.
He also took a no-hitter into the fifth inning.
“I felt pretty good out there,” Sabathia said after the game.
“I was just having fun, and it was good to be back. I was throwing more strikes and Posada made sure I stayed in line and got the ball down.”
Girardi also made note of his ace’s ability, and noticed Sabathia’s efforts in the game.
“His velocity was the best I’ve seen it consistently all year,” Girardi commented on Sabathia’s pitching.
“He was in a rhythm with Posada, and he just had good stuff tonight.”
The Tribe was able to push five runs across on the night, and their scoring began in the fifth inning.
Ryan Garko singled to score Shin-Soo Choo, and Jamey Carroll later singled to score Mark DeRosa.
In the bottom of the sixth, Grady Sizemore took his former teammate deep, belting a solo home run, his ninth of 2009.
Choo also homered off Yankee reliever Jose Veras in the ninth and Ben Francisco doubled to score DeRosa, finishing up the Tribe’s offense in the game.
Sabathia gets the win, and his record now stands at 5-3.
Carmona took the loss, and is now at 2-5.
The Yankees have now won 14 of their last 17 games, and sit in first place in the American League Eastern Division, leading by a game and a half over the Boston Red Sox and Toronto Blue Jays, who currently share second place in the standings.
The Bombers will face the Indians in game three of the four game series from Cleveland tomorrow afternoon.
Phil Hughes (3-2, 5.16 ERA) will look to keep the Yankees rolling, facing former Yankee Carl Pavano (5-4, 5.50 ERA)
Media Credit: YES Network, Yankees.com