At some point we're going to realize what this team is. Given how the roster is built, one would think that we should already know what to expect. This is a team full of power hitters. Home runs are going to drive the offense more often than not. We can joke, or cry, about too many home runs and the lack of small ball, but we better get used to it. This team is what it is, and it's a good problem to have.
Hiroki Kuroda didn't need the help, but the Yankees brought the power offense tonight. They're good people like that. Guessing there's a bit of a language barrier, so the fact that they helped him without even being asked is even more admirable. Robinson Cano got the offense going with a two-run homer in the second. The home run brought an early end to Johan Santana's bid for a second straight no-hitter and sent the ghost of Johnny Vander Meer back to not giving a shit about the first couple innings after a no-hitter. He's dead. He has to have something better to do than pay attention to two or three no-hit innings after a nine inning no-hitter. Stop bothering him.
More Cano? More Cano. More Cano and more home runs. Three of them in a row, in fact. Santana continued to not no-hit the Yankees in the third, giving up consecutive home runs to Cano, Nick Swisher and Andruw Jones. Cano hitting his second home run is impressive, but wow, Andruw Jones. Guy is the definition of country strong. It's annoying, and a little bit funny, to see him take max effort home run hacks with every swing, but when he connects, it isn't going to be a cheap one. Not sure if there's a perfect way to cap three straight home runs, but if there is, that's probably it.
- Because baseball loves to prod the Mets, Kuroda was allowed to carry a no-hitter into the sixth inning. In a sympathetic gesture, the powers that be allowed Omar Quintanilla to end the torture with a two-out double in the sixth.
- If not for some good luck turned bad luck on a comeback liner, Kuroda probably could have continued to build on yet another great start. As it was, a final line of seven innings, no runs, one hit, seven strikeouts and one walk would have to do. That makes three straight quality starts for Hirok, who lowered his season numbers to a 3.49 ERA, 4.60 FIP, 4.09 xFIP. He's gotten away from giving up homers lately, so hopefully that line continues to move south. Really good stuff from the resident NL pitcher lately.
- Hits with runners in scoring position? Does it count that they went 2 for 6 with RISP since it was already a blowout? Insignificant or not, just keep doing it.
- Another 0-fer night for Derek Jeter. Someone get this man a parachute. We all knew he wasn't going to keep hitting like he did in April, but falling off a cliff like he has? It's startling for even the most cynical fan.
- Swisher went 2-4 with a home run, double, two RBI and a walk. Good to see him rack up a couple hits and a walk. The bad BABIP luck has been frustrating, but the lack of walks has been the biggest piece missing from his game this year. If he starts taking walks again, he should be due for solid turnaround.
- Ryota Igarashi throws hard, and that's about where it ends. Two walks and an RBI double to break up the shutout in the ninth are obnoxious. He probably wouldn't have been pitching up nine in the ninth, but hurry back, David Robertson. That's warranted in every situation.
- Established singles hitter Josh Thole
- Unrelated to this game entirely, but Russell Branyan is mashing in Triple-A. 1.390 OPS mashing since replacing Steve Pearce. Proof, and proof.
Phil Hughes gets the start in the second game of the series against Dillon Gee. Not sure if it's the FOX game this week, but be a good Boy Scout and be prepared just in case.
Play of the Game: Robinson Cano's second inning home run (+15%)
Comment of the Game: waw for an always timely slam on Fenway Park.