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Around the Yankee Universe, 06.02.09

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Wow! There is a lot of stuff to touch on today as we look around the Inter-Google at stories making news about our red-hot New York Yankees. Let's get started.

"I'm proud of our guys, I'm proud of what they've done and what our staff has put in," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "They work hard with them all the time. Every position they work hard with them defensively, and it's paid off. The guys have to be willing to do the work and buy into it, and they've been great."

Mark Teixeira has, of course, made a huge difference. Also, the Yankees may not make a host of spectacular plays. But, with good pitching making the plays you are supposed to make can be enough. If I can, at some point I will take a look at just how good the Yankee defense actually is -- or isn't.

  • Joba Chamberlain's performance last night left everyone buzzing. There was, of course, the head-first dive that was likely the defensive play of the year. Mostly, though, there were 8 dominant innings will a fastball consistently above 95 miles per hour. Easily the best start of Chamberlain's career.

On a warm evening when seagulls and some late-arriving insects invaded Progressive Field, Chamberlain consistently showed why the Yankees want him to be a starter. From his 98-mile-per-hour fastball to his dancing curveball to his wicked slider, Chamberlain had the look of a pitcher who could be a front-of-the-rotation starter for a decade. ...

Chamberlain gave up two runs and four hits and needed 106 pitches to get 24 outs. If he can routinely pitch deep into games, the Yankees will have the formidable starter they have long touted and they might silence the shouting about sending him to the bullpen. Chamberlain has had difficulty maintaining his velocity, but he was throwing 97 m.p.h. in the eighth.

"Hands down, that’s the best I’ve ever seen him," (Nick) Swisher said.

"It's our home park; it is what it is," CC Sabathia said. "We'll benefit from it from an offensive standpoint, so we just have to do what we can to keep the other teams in the park. It can't affect the way you pitch."