The Yankees just finished a 3-game series at Yankee Stadium versus the Seattle Mariners. The Mariners entered the series on Tuesday evening with a 31-44 record, while the Yankees entered with a 47-28 record. The series started with what was supposed to be a solid pitching match-up between Cliff Lee and Phil Hughes.
All Yankees fans remember how well Lee mastered the Yankees last October in the World Series. This time around, he was nothing short of spectacular, while Phil Hughes struggled in his first start after the Yankees skipped a start due to the “Hughes Rules”. Cliff Lee pitched a complete game 8 hitter, while only allowing 3 earned runs, with 2 strikeouts, and one walk.
Hughes struggled early, allowing 10 hits in 5.2 innings pitched and allowing 6 earned runs. He struck out 3 Mariners, and walked two. Offensive highlights on the day were a pair of home runs by Nick Swisher, and a pair of RBI’s for Ichiro Suzuki and Rob Johnson. The Mariners won game 1 by a score of 7-4.
Game two displayed a brilliant pitching performance by former 19-game winner Felix Hernandez. There was absolutely NO offense production by the Bombers. They were held to only 2-hits, while striking out 11 times.
King Felix had the Yankees number as he pitched a complete game victory, improving his record to 6-5. Javier Vazquez started for the Yankees, allowing 3 earned runs on 6 hits in 6 innings while striking out 8. The bullpen didn’t help! Damaso Marte and Chad Gaudin each allowed a pair of runs to allow the Mariners to easily win the game by a score of 7-0.
In the series finale, C.C. Sabathia squared off against Ryan Rowland-Smith. In what should have been a slug-fest for the Yankees, fans were treated to a solid pitchers duel throughout the entire game until Alex Rodriguez broke a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the 8th inning by crushing a 2-run home run (595th of his career) to give the Yankees a 4-2 lead.
Mariano Rivera entered the game in the top of the 9th inning to record his 18th save of the season by shutting down the Mariners 1-2-3. He lowered his ERA to a phenomenal 0.52. Robinson Cano hit a bomb of his own in the bottom of the 4th inning to increase his team leading HR total to 16 on the season. Sabathia pitched another great game, allowing 2 earned runs in eight innings of work, improving his season record to 10-3.
The Mariners won the series 2-1. The Mariners enter their next series at Detroit with a record of 33-45, while the Yankees remain in the Bronx to start a 3-game series against the Blue Jays with a record of 48-30.