Here is your New York Yankees vs. Minnesota Twins ALDS Game 2 'Kudos & Wet Willies.' Lots of great stuff and very little to complain about from a Yankee perspective after jumping out to a 2-0 lead over the Twins in the best-of-five playoff series.
So, let's get on with it. The 'Kudos & Wet Willies' are after the jump.
Kudos to ...
Andy Pettitte: So much for all those questions about how effective he would be after making only three September starts after spending two months on the disabled list. And after complaining about back soreness near the end of the regular season. The veteran left-hander was spectacular, allowing just five hits and two runs over seven masterful innings.
Lance Berkman: This is the kind of postseason performance the Yankees hoped they would get when they acquired Berkman from the Houston Astros at the trade deadline. A solo home run to left center, then a rocket double to almost the same area that plated the go-ahead run in the seventh inning. Twins fans will, justifiably, complain that Berkman should have been called out on strikes on the previous pitch. They would be right. Berkman, however, did what Minnesota's Jim Thome failed to do the night before -- take advantage of an umpiring mistake.
Kerry Wood and Mariano Rivera: The Yankee bullpen has now thrown five scoreless innings in two games. Worried about Wood after he needed Rivera's help Wednesday to get out of the eighth inning in Game 1? He did not need any help Thursday night. He blew the Twins away, retiring them in order on 10 pitches in Thursday's eighth inning. Rivera nailed down the victory by being Rivera.
Curtis Granderson: Three more hits for Granderson, who is now 4-for-8 with three RBI in two postseason games.
Brett Gardner: A pair of hits, a sacrifice bunt and a gutty steal of third base by Gardner that set up an eighth-inning insurance run.
Wet Willies to ...
Alex Rodriguez, Robinson Cano and Nick Swisher: The 4-6 hitters in the Yankee lineup had very little to do with the Yankee victory, leaving 17 men on base between the three of them. A-Rod drove in a run with a sacrifice fly, but left four runners on base. Cano left five, and Swisher left four. Can't keep winning without more production than that from the middle of the lineup.