Things have been tough for the New York Yankees this season. They have been without an All-Star Third baseman so far and their first batsman went through a month long slump. As if that wasn’t enough, their starting right fielder was placed on the disabled list. This put a lot of pressure on the remaining roster to go out onto the field and get the job done.
> However, the Yankees have seen a revival of sorts after hitting 11 runs on Tuesday night and 8 on Wednesday. And the fireworks didn’t stop there as they scored another 7 against the Angels on Thursday night with 10 in another gutsy performance on Friday. Jorge Posada’s walk-off 2-run single sealed the comeback for the Yankees in a 10-9 win over the Angles and proved to the fans that despite all the setbacks, things are beginning to look good for the giants of MLB.
“We keep fighting, and that’s what I like,” Posada said. “I think this team has a lot of life.” Trailing the Angles by 5, the Yankees had just 4 outs to go and entering the ninth inning, they were still one run behind. Mark Teixeira, their out of form first batter walked on the sixth pitch off Brian Fuentes. Hideki Matsui and Robinson Cano followed up with singles each, loading the bases. On came Posada and hit a line-drive in the gap in left-center field and the runners came home. The Yankees had just won their 4th straight game for the first time this season to take their record to 13-10.
“I’m just glad it didn’t come down to two outs,” left fielder Johnny Damon said. “We were able to do all that without anybody out in the ninth inning. We didn’t have to stress too much.” But there were enough reasons for stress for the Yankees as the bullpen just couldn’t seem to get a hold on the game. Andy Pettitte had a poor start again and by the sixth inning, looked like his pitches would cross the plate on a bounce.
Despite his fatigue, Pettitte wasn’t solely to blame for the disaster as with two-outs and a man on first, Erick Aybar’s hit went to Pena at third base who just couldn’t hold onto the skidding ball. Pettitte then walked the next batter to load the bases and was taken off. Enter rookie Mark Melancon who’s first job on the pitch became to give the Angels three runs off of his first pitch. However, all three runs were charged to Pettitte.
“I was in a real bad mood,” Pettitte said, with the perspective of a game-winning rally. “Now, I’m in a great mood.”
Almost everyone in the Yankee clan was in a good mood after the performance as everyone contributed to a well-fought win. A five run deficit is a tall order in any circumstances but if you add to it the fact that the Yankees had just 4 outs left and were without Alex Rodriguez and Xavier Nady and with a hapless Teixeira, things ended quite smoothly.
“We definitely will take it this way,” Damon said. “We would have liked to have just cruised and won, 4-0, but this shows that we can come back. We can come back against tough teams, and we do have a lot of weapons on this team that can pitch in and contribute to us.”
“The bottom of the lineup has been great,” Posada said. “Pena was outstanding today. You have Melky swinging the bat real well. If we keep those guys going, we have a pretty good chance.”
Rodriguez is all set to return to the roster soon and there is no doubt that Teixeira will also turn a corner sooner or later, which basically means that the only way to go for the Yankees is up and they have already started their journey.
“It was a good one for us,” shortstop Derek Jeter said. “If they get a lead like that, most of the time, it’s over with. But we were able to fight back and get a big win for us.”