CC had a very good fastball tonight that had good life and was consistently 94-95. His change was a tough one for him as he didn't have good location on it most of the night and his curve was decent. Seattle does not have a great offense, but with the Yankees swinging the bat so poorly the game was only 2-0 going into the 8th inning. After listening to the announcers tonight I know why I usually fast forward like crazy...they were talking up what a great game Rowland Smith was throwing and at one point it he had pitched 4 innings and allowed 2 runs on a high pitch count. Then the Yanks had the bases loaded in the 6th and failed to get in any runs. His overall line was good, but he was not throwing well, the Yanks were hitting poorly. As I stated in an earlier post, I don't understand why the Yanks choose to rest players in the infield and play Pena when a lefty is on the mound? It is like they don't have a plan. Pena, who has been horrible at the plate this year, has always been better from the left side of the plate and this year he is still looking for his first hit from the right side.
In the 8th inning, CC walked the leadoff hitter, got an out and then allowed a single before getting another out. While CC was not sharp at this point, I was OK leaving him in the game against Branyan as Branyan is better against righties and he homered off of Marte earlier in the series. After Posada did a very bad job of letting the ball go to the screen for a passed ball, Kay was all over how huge it was moving the runners over. Now this is clearly true and it was a bad play, but with 2 outs it is time for CC to get the lefty out. With an open base, he threw a 3-1 pitch down the middle and Branyan ripped it on one hop to Swisher. He had a shot at Ichiro at home, but he didn't have too much on his throw (a strong armed RF could have gunned him out). Tex correctly cut the ball off and easily got Branyan going to 2nd to end the inning, but the score was tied. Kay continued talking about how huge the play was moving the runners over (and it was), but we also got an out on the play and that was huge as well. Imagine if it was 1st and 2nd and the same hit happened and it was either bases loaded or 1st and 2nd with the score 2-1 and the inning was still going on...Seattle might not have scored anything, but they also might have blown it open with CC out of the game and probably Joba in. I am only saying it might have been worse if the passed ball didn't happen.
Thankfully Seattle went to their horrible closer, who throws 94 but it is very straight and he didn't throw anything but a fastball. Swisher somehow struck out, but Tex singled an ARod hit a homer pulling his hands way in but putting a good swing on a high and a little outside pitch for a dinger. It was an odd swing, but he hit it well. Aardsma now has a 5.33 ERA and is 0-5 ( I know he was good last year). On the other end of the spectrum, The Genius Maker came in and threw 13 pitches to dominate the 9th for his 18th save. He has now allowed only 12 hits in 30.1 innings. His WHIP is an unreal and career best 0.59; he looks as good as ever...The Genius Maker!