On a night when the entire baseball world was focused on Washington, D.C. — and rightly so, as Stephen Strasburg pitched what may have been the most dominating Major League debut in history, throwing seven innings of two-run ball with 14(!) strikeouts — the baseball team located about 45 minutes north on 95 was busy getting pummeled by the Yankees, 12-7.
Despite clearly not having his best stuff, Phil Hughes was still able to give six innings of three-run ball. Hughes only notched four strikeouts while scattering nine hits, but was able to keep the damage to a minimum. After 12 starts, Hughes’ ERA sits at 2.71 — not too shabby at all. Meanwhile, the Yankees went to work on offense, getting on the board right off the bat on a Nick Swisher two-run home run — Swisher would later add a bases-clearing three-RBI double — and then jumping out to a 6-0 lead two innings later on a Curtis Granderson grand slam.
Curiously, Alex Rodriguez was the only Yankee starter without a hit or a walk. I suppose there may have been some lingering effects from his minor injury on Sunday, but he still apparently felt good enough to start the game and unfortunately I didn’t love what I saw from him. He hacked at several lousy pitches and looked fairly uncomfortable at the plate, and his struggles are that much more vexing considering the Yankees were facing the worst pitching staff in the league and picked up 15 hits.
Yankeeist looked at Alex’s power outage just under a month ago, and though he’s picked his numbers up somewhat since then it still doesn’t feel like he’s where he should be. I’ll probably do a follow-up analysis at some point to see if there’s anything inside the numbers that might help explain what’s going on with A-Rod, although for the time being look for a Slump Watch piece from Mike later today for some insight into Alex’s struggles.
After a scoreless inning from David Robertson, Chad Gaudin came in and did what Chad Gaudin does best: give up runs, four of them to be exact. I’m not really sure what the point of Gaudin is on this team right now, given that you can really only bring him in during a blowout. Unless Chad turns things around quickly it’s hard to imagine he’ll stick around all that much longer.
All in all, another satisfying win, especially given that both Tampa Bay and Boston won yet again.
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