Controversy! Michael Pineda made his Yankee Stadium debut and was phenomenal for six innings. Unfortunately, that was all drowned out by the fact that he also had the most obvious pine tar hand in the history of pine tar hands.
Someone was using a banned substance and YES, NESN, and Twitter were ON IT. By all means, let's ignore the fact that it's a widely accepted practice among players behind the scenes.
For me, the big deal was that Pineda struck out seven while only walking two, giving up four hits, and one run in six innings. It's good to see that his shoulder seems healthy and he's not just decent, but actually thriving. Whatever's on his hand, glove or butt is of little concern to me. This was his first win since 2011 and he absolutely earned.
The Yankees offense did their job, collecting seven hits and scoring four runs (only two earned) in six innings off Clay Buchholz. It all started in the fourth inning when Jacoby Ellsbury reached base on a Jonathan Herrera error at third base. Carlos Beltran singled and Brian McCann FINALLY broke through the shift on a single to right field to score a run. With Beltran now on third, Alfonso Soriano hit into a double play that made it 2–0. In the next inning, Dean Anna hit the first home run of his career to right field. Then Derek Jeter hit a ground-rule double and Ellsbury knocked him in with a single.
Brett Gardner also had a hit and Jeter added a total of two to his massive collection of hits. In the seventh inning it looked like Yangerivs Solarte was about to hit his first major league home run, but it ended up dying right up against the wall instead and everyone was disappointed. This is the first time Solarte has gone hitless since April 2, though, to be fair, he was cheated out of a hit when Daniel Nava made a fantastic diving catch to rob the rookie of a bloop single. Can the Legend of Solarte continue tomorrow?
The biggest issue going into the game was the severe lack of bullpen. With David Robertson on the DL, Adam Warren and Shawn Kelley were also deemed unavailable, so it could have been a very bad night if the Yankees needed to rely too heavily on the relievers they had left. Thankfully, they seemed to have no problems. Cesar Cabral came into the game in the seventh and struck out two batters before turning the ball over to the struggling David Phelps. Even more thankfully, Phelps wasn't hot garbage. He went 2.1 innings with three strikeouts and didn't allow anyone on base to finish off the game and get the save.