Monday, June 20, 2011

Yankees take series in Chicago over the Cubs

“Either way, I’m ready,” Swisher said. “I’m not a guy that really looks at the numbers. I just go off how I feel in my own head. You have to. This game can beat you up and it can put you at the top of the mountain. You’re going to have good times and bad times, but tonight was definitely a good night.”  This is Nick Swisher talking about his three run homerun that won the game for the Yankees.  Swisher had been struggling all year long from the left side but did his job in this at-bat. He was brutal earlier this season, but for the past month now he’s hit for average, hit for power and drawn 21 walks in his past 23 games.
“I feel good,” he said. “I know I dug myself a hole there early in the season, but I’ve been battling, fighting and putting the time in, just having run. I’m finally laughing again and smiling, really enjoying the game like I know how.”

Brett Gardner also seems to have turned his season around, and Jorge Posada was showing some positive signs before the Yankees started playing the National League portion of the schedule and lost their designated hitter. The Yankees right now are playing well and their offense is doing what it was supposed to for the most part, Swisher, Posada and Gardner have huge importance with the offense and the best case scenario has happened with them hitting again.  The Yankees don't want to make a trade for a bat, if this continues they won't have too, if anything they need pitching. 

 CC Sabathia had another one of those games where he looked rocky earlier and seemed to finally decide he’d had enough. After the Alfonso Soriano homer that gave the Cubs a three-run lead, Sabathia allowed just three more hits and he retired 12 of the last 13 batters he faced.  Sabathia is that type of guy that will battle through things and give you a chance to win the game. 

 Both Sabathia and Girardi said the key was going to more offspeed pitches late in the game. The Cubs were being aggressive, and Sabathia was able to get some early swings and misses.

 Of course, you know what Sabathia was most upset about: His 0-for-3 at the plate. He actually came up in pretty key spots early in the game and never got it done. And that’s from a guy who takes a lot of pride in his ability to hit. And his teammates know it. “I’ve been getting crushed in (the clubhouse),” Sabathia said. “You know me, I didn’t go in and look at pitches I was throwing. I went in and looked at my three at-bats. We’ve got some work to do before Citi Field.”

Rough couple of days for Russell Martin, who was run over at home plate yesterday and was hit in the head on a swing tonight. “It’s part of the trade unfortunately,” Girardi said. “You’re going to get hit with some back swings and it’s frustrating, but we’ll see how he is tomorrow.”  Martin is tough, real tough and he was back behind the plate tonight. 

 Girardi said he was going to Dave Robertson in the bottom of the eighth, no matter what happened in the top of the inning. “I was going to make the switch because that part of the order had given (Sabathia) trouble,” Girardi said.

 Three-hit game for Brett Gardner, including the first leadoff home run of his career. He has eight multi-hit games in his past 15. “I really didn’t have a lot of concerns (putting him in the leadoff spot),” Girardi said. “His struggles the first month of the season were whether he was hitting first or ninth, he was struggling. He’s just started to swing the bat well.”

After losing the opener, the Yankees were able to salvage a series win. “It’s a good feeling,” Girardi said. “We didn’t score any runs the first day, and to be able to come back and the way he won tonight, it’s a close game and then we were able to break it open.”

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