34 must be a lucky number in the World Series.
And who will forget Nolan Ryan and Rollie Fingers?
AJ Burnett pitched for the Yankees in World Series Game 2 with a blast. The Yankees beat the Phillies on 3-1, tying the series on Thursday night in Yankee Stadium.
The Pie-Man of the Bronx was able to keep his goal for the game. "I won't change anything as far as my plan or my attack, just maybe not be so careless from the get go -- just throwing balls over the middle to get strike one," Burnett said.
The right-handed pitcher allowed 4 hits, 2 walks and just one run in seven innings. The run was from Raul Ibañez, who hit a double, driven by Matt Stairs' single, a ground ball to left field that was deflected by Alex Rodriguez in the second inning.
If the Phillies had a lot of runs in Game 1 on Wednesday, Thursday night gave them a lot of strikes and strikeouts. Burnett struck out Raul Ibañez twice and Ryan Howard thrice. He struck out four other Phillies.
Burnett's favoured catcher was outstanding, not just in helping him with his pitches. Jose Molina, also a Puerto Rican, kept a runner from staying in the fourth inning. Jayson Werth hit a single on a full count but while Ibañez was batting, he was picked off by Molina at first base on a throw to Mark Teixeira. AJ Burnett only faced three batters in the fourth inning.
The Bronx Bombers hit two solo home runs. The Yankees' first homer in the World Series came off the previously shy bat of Mark Teixeira over the fence in the right centre field in the fourth inning. It was his first career World Series home run.
The other solo homer was provided my Hideki Matsui on a fly ball in the right field in the sixth inning. It was Godzilla's second career World Series home run.
When Jorge Posada was announced to pinch hit for Jose Molina in the seventh inning, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel left the dugout to get the ball from Pedro Martinez, the Phillies starter, and summoned Park Chan-Ho to face Posada who went 0-for-7 against him.
Pedro Martinez pitched for 6 innings and left the mound with 4.50 ERA. He struckout eight Yankees but allowed 6 hits and 3 runs.
A.J. Burnett may opt for Jose Molina to catch for him, but he was the number one cheerleader of Jorge Posada when the veteran catcher hit a single on a line drive to centre field driving in Brett Gardner, who was pinch running for Jerry Hairston, Jr., for another run. The run was charged to Pedro Martinez.
The Philadelphia Phillies were able to keep the remaining Yanks off the plate when Johnny Damon lined into a double play. Posada was out off first. They also caused a gathering of the umpires to discuss the play and call, which was questioned by Joe Girardi.
The Phillies were trying to rally more runs, but the goal seemed impossible as they had to face Mariano Rivera in the eight inning. Posada stayed in the game to replace Jose Molina.
The eight inning was quite a battle against The Sandman who drew the third walk for the Phillies with just one out. Shane Victorino, batting next, was able to hit a single on a ground ball to right field. The Old Guard closer was able to stay out of trouble when Chase Utley grounded into double play, Robinson Cano to shortstop Derek Jeter to Mark Teixeira. Shane Victorino was out at second base.
Ryan Howard was batting first in the ninth inning, but he never had the chance to have a base hit as he was struck out on 0-3 count by Mariano Rivera. The first baseman of the Phillies was totally shut out by Burnett and Rivera in his four at-bats.
After 38 pitches, Mariano Rivera struck out the eighth batter he faced on 2-2 count for the final out of the game.
The Yankees are off to follow the Phillies in Citizens Bank Park for Game 3 on Saturday night. Andy Pettitte will start for the Yankees who will face Cole Hamels.
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