There was a point in this game where the big story was the number of wild pitches thrown by Freddy Garcia (five!). The Orioles had a 4-1 lead heading into the sixth, but the Yankees equalized via three singles, a walk, a sac fly and an error. Then it became a battle of the bullpens. For the Yanks it was David Phelps, David Robertson, Boone Logan, Cory Wade, Clay Rapada and Mariano Rivera, who hurled 7.1 scoreless relief innings. The Orioles matched them inning for inning until the 12th, when Pedro Strop (who can reach the high 90s with his fastball) offered up a hanging slider to Raul Ibanez, who launched it into the right centerfield gap to give the Yanks the lead. Thank goodness!
What was Rob Thomson thinking in the seventh when he sent Nick Swisher home on Robinson Cano's double (where he was tagged out)? 1. Swisher was already hobbling after being hit in the foot by a pitch, and 2. there were no outs, which would've led to A-Rod and Tex getting chances to drive in the go-ahead run with an out. I could understand it with two outs, but not with none.
Speaking of Garcia's wildness, he threw four wild pitches all of last season. He topped that in just 4.2 innings tonight. (He also hit a batter.) According to Jim Palmer on MASN, it was due to the cool, humid weather, which made the ball slippery.
The Yanks let Chen off the hook. The night began game with a Derek Jeter home run and Swisher double. They failed to add to their 1-0 lead and it nearly cost them the game.
The lineup went 2-18 with RISP (A-Rod and Tex went 1-11 overall). Baltimore went 0-8.
Tim Welke's strikezone was rather strange. It seemed to morph as the game progressed. As frustrating as it is for us fans, it must be doubly so for the actual participants.
David Phelps was great in relief. He tossed 2.1 perfect innings with four strikeouts. His two-seamer had Baltimore batters confused throughout.
Play of the Game: Ibanez's RBI double with two outs in the 12th, what else? (+34%)
Sweet, sweet sleep beckons...