Yankee Stadium saw all kinds of weather today, ranging from overcast to sleet and snow but no matter how unpredictable the weather was, one thing was for sure; baseball is back and the Yankees are looking for number 28. Over 48, 000 fans attended the game even though it was brutal to sit through (due to the weather) and the Yankees did not want to send their fans home unhappy.
To start off the year on a good note, the Yankees beat the Tigers 6-3 even though the Tigers had one more hit. The effort from each and every player is what helped the Yankees get their first win.
First, Mark Teixeira who has been known for his slow starts began his season with a three-run home run to give C.C. Sabathia a two run cushion. Sabathia eventually lost the lead as an error by Robinson Cano followed by a Detroit hit tied the game up at three.
Luckily the Yankees had Curtis Granderson to make plays all over the field. In the first inning, Granderson made a spectacular diving catch, which could have easily dropped in for a single. Later in the seventh he hit a solo home run that went into the second deck in right field, breaking the tie. From that point on it was all Yankees.
The bullpen, which has been a major concern for years was able to take control and keep the talented Detroit hitters from making a comeback. After the sixth inning, Joba Chamberlain, Rafael Soriano and Mariano Rivera were able to keep the Tigers from getting a single hit as the Yankees stretched their lead to three and came out victorious.
Although he pitched for one inning, Joba Chamberlain went up against Detroit's more dangerous hitters and did not give up a hit, which was surprising. After a failed stint as a starter and having a shaky season as a reliever last year, most considered Joba as "washed-up". Even with that chip on his shoulder he entered what was a tied game, struck a batter out and exited the stadium with a win.
The performance of the Yankees bullpen was impressive against the Tigers. If these outings become recurrent, the Yankees will be a dominant force. This has been the missing piece for years as the Yankees have blown many games due to an insufficient bullpen. Their starting rotation is solid and if their bullpen stays the way it is, it will instill a sense of confidence in those starting pitchers and relieve some pressure and they won't have to worry about going too deep into games.
Their batting speaks for itself; with Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez, Robinson Cano, in the 3-4-5 slots to bring power to the lineup it scares pitchers. The good hitting by Russel Martin and Granderson proved that the lineup is not just about the power hitters in the middle of the lineup.
The bottom line is, if the Yankees continue to play as a united force and not just individuals doing well, they will have a successful season.
Expect a quality a season and possibly a playoff appearance via the wild card.