My seats to this one were in the third row of section 202 in the right field bleachers. My friends were running late getting out of work, so the game started before we could take our seats. We were walking toward the entrance to the bleachers beneath the train tracks when the crowd roared, then booed. I knew that Javier Vazquez had given up a home run. I wouldn’t find out until we sat down that he’d given up a moon shot to David Ortiz.
In the bottom of the 1st Mark Teixeira put a 2 run shot in section 203. After the bumpy top of the 1st, for a moment, it looked as though the Yankees would be able to get to Clay Buchholz. They didn’t. Buccholz settled down, and pretty much dominated after the home run. He took the game into the 8th inning on less than 100 pitches. The Yankees did manage 9 hits off Clay, but he efficiently worked out of trouble the entire game.
Javy was terrible. After Tex corrected his 1st inning mistake, he gave up a lead off double to Adrian Beltre in the 2nd inning and then walked the next 31 batters, or something. I lost count but the Red Sox plated 3 more runs. My lasting memory of Javy’s night, other than the taste of vomit in my mouth, was that he’d thrown something like 60 pitches at the end of the 2nd inning.
Alex Rodriguez drove in a run with an RBI single in the 5th inning, but 4-3 was as close as this messy affair was going to get. Javy gave up a 2 run homer to Ryan Kalish (who?) the next inning to make sure the Yankees were not coming back. From a pure baseball perspective, the homer was a thing of beauty. The hit was a laser beam directly toward the Yankee bullpen. It landed maybe 20 feet directly in front of me.
A bullpen combination of Joba Chamberlain, Kerry Wood, Boone Logan and Chad Gaudin didn’t let things get any worse, but the Yankees had already thrown in the towel. The only highlight of the later innings was Derek Jeter‘s last at bat. Jeter just wasn’t going to allow Jonathan Papelbon to beat him. He fouled off what seemed like a ton of pitches before drawing a walk. It was a moral victory, but a victory of sorts none the less.
Speaking of moral victories, the most important development of the night was Toronto beating Tampa Bay 2-1. The Sox may have gained a game on both teams, but the Yankees hung onto 1st place. As of this writing, the Toronto Extra Base Hits (trademark, Larry Koestler) are pummeling the Rays, 13-5. With any luck most of the heavy lifting will be done before CC Sabathia takes the mound against John Lackey.
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