Wow…That game was something, wasn’t it? To be honest, I’m still catching my breath and trying to come up with the right words to complete this recap.
The Yankees started the scoring in the top of the second off of Tigers starter Doug Fister. With Eric Chavez on first following a single, Raul Ibanez hit a ball over centerfielder Quentin Berry’s head which resulted in an RBI triple for Ibanez. Ichiro followed that up with an RBI single to make it 2-0.
Hiroki Kuroda held the Tigers scoreless until the fifth inning. And what an inning that was. Kuroda surrendered a double to Jhonny Peralta which was followed by an Alex Avila two-run shot to tie the game. After getting two outs and with runners on first and second, Andy Dirks hit a ball to left that umpire Tim Welke initially called foul but then called fair which resulted in a double that scored Berry from second.
The fair ball call was correct but Welke initially called it foul which seemed to screw up Ibanez a little bit* – of course, having Ibanez playing in the field wasn’t the best choice either but that rant is for another day. Joe Girardi came out of the dugout to argue and Welke allowed him to vent because he knew he screwed up. But then Girardi went nuclear and was tossed from the game.
According to Jack Curry of YES, who looked at tape of the Girardi explosion, Girardi said, “I’m protesting this game. You called it a foul ball.”
Good thing for Girardi and for Yankee fans, he won’t have to do that because his team came back. Detroit manager Jim Leyland brought in Joaquin Benoit to replace Octavio Dotel who had replaced Fister with one out in the seventh.
After Robinson Cano grounded out, Mark Teixeira hit a 2-0 bullet into the seats in right to tie the game. The ball was out of the park in what seemed like a nanosecond. Not to be outdone, Chavez who has been unbelievable this series, hit a solo shot of his own in the very next at bat to give the Yankees a 4-3 lead.
David Phelps and Rafael Soriano combined to pitch two scoreless innings, though the bottom of the ninth did start off a teensy bit dicey. Soriano gave up a double to Avila which was followed by a single by Omar Infante. With runners on first and third with no outs, Soriano got Ramon Santiago to line out to second, induced a Berry pop out to short and ended the game with a Dirks fly out to centerfield.
- Chavez in this series: 9/16 with two doubles, two home runs, five RBI, scored six runs and increased his batting average from .264 to .289
- Kuroda’s daytime ERA is 0.84
- Ibanez finished 2-4 with a double, triple, an RBI and a run scored
- Clay Rapada picked up his third win of the season
- Soriano picked up save number 27
*Ibanez in his postgame interview on YES said he was going off the noise of the crowd so he didn’t see Welke call it fair. He assumed it was foul then heard the crowd going crazy.
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