The Yankees' offense finally woke up, scoring six runs on nine hits, five of which came off of Angels' ace Jered Weaver. But the offense wasn't the only thing to have a good day, as CC Sabathia had a fantastic outing of his own. All of this very nearly didn't matter, after the Angels nearly mounted a comeback in the ninth, but Mo finally managed to get the last out to give the Yankees a 6-5 win.
CC went eight innings, allowing five hits and three walks, with two runs credited to him. He struck out six and gave the Yankees' struggling offense just what they needed, a dominant outing. And fortunately, the offense did paid him back with runs.
Despite facing Weaver, the Yankees' offense got off to a good start in the top of the first inning. Brett Gardner led off the game with a double. Ichiro Suzuki came up next, and he drew a walk. Robinson Cano came up next, and during his at bat, Weaver threw away a pick-off attempt to second base, which allowed Gardner and Ichiro to both move up a base. With two on and no out, it was time for another round of "How will the Yankees not score this time". The answer was, Cano strikes out, Travis Hafner draws a walk, and Vernon Wells grounds into a double play.
The Angels squandered chances of their own in the bottom half of the first, however. Peter Bourjos led off against Sabathia with a single, and when Mike Trout drew a walk, the Angels were in the same spot the Yankees just were. Albert Pujols came up next and grounded into a double play, but advanced Bourjos to third. Mike Trumbo couldn't do anything either, as he grounded out to end the inning.
In the third inning, the Yankees looked like they would mess up another golden chance. Chris Stewart led off the inning by drawing a walk. He advanced to third when Gardner singled. During Ichiro's at bat, Gardner stole second to again put runners on second and third with no outs. After Ichiro struck out and Cano popped out, another scoreless inning looked on the cards. But Hafner showed signs of life when he smacked a three run home run. And shockingly, the Yankees weren't done there. Wells kept the inning going by getting fly ball to drop to left field. Lyle Overbay was up next and he hit a fly ball to deep center field. It looked like Bourjos would make the catch to end the inning, but he couldn't quite come up with the ball and Wells scored, making it 4-0. And they still weren't done. With Overbay on second, Nix hit a single (advancing to second on the throw), which scored another run. The inning finally ended when Nix got picked off at second, but the Yankees had already scored five whole runs in an inning.
While that was happening, CC was cruising. After the blip in the first inning, Sabathia retired the next nine Angels' hitters. But he did get himself into some trouble in the fifth inning. Howie Kendrick led off with a single, just the Angels' second hit of the day. After that Chris Iannetta drew a walk, putting two on with no out. Erick Aybar was up next, and he grounded a ball to third. Nix stepped on the bag and threw over to second to complete a double play. (It has to be said that the wrong call was made and Iannetta was safe at second,.) CC then got Alberto Callaspo to ground one back to him for the final out of the inning.
There was a brief moment of worry in the sixth inning, when CC was hit by a Mike Trout line drive. But CC was okay and waived Girardi and the trainer back to the dugout, before they could get to the mound to examine him.
The Yankees added to their score in the eighth inning. Cano led off with a double, and advanced to third on a ground out by Hafner. Wells then hit a fly ball to the warning track. Bourjos made the catch, but it was deep enough to allow Cano to tag up and score. That made it 6-0 Yankees. It didn't seem like it at the time, but that ended up being a pretty big insurance run.
Throughout all that, CC continued cruising. He came back out for the ninth inning, but was pulled after allowing a double to Trout and walking Pujols. David Roberton was brought in as Mike Trumbo came to the plate. On the second pitch of the at bat, Trumbo lined one off of Robertson. That scored Trout, ending the shut out. The trainer came out to look at Robertson, but after a few test pitches, he remained in the game. Robertson struck out Howie Kendrick, but after walking JB Shuck, Girardi decided not to mess around anymore and brought in Mariano Rivera.
Mo came in with the bases loaded and got Erick Aybar to bounce one to Overbay at first. Overbay opted to get the sure out at first and allowed Pujols to score. But Callaspo was up next and he blooped one into left, which scored another two runs, cutting the Yankee lead down to just two runs. Brad Hawpe came up next, and he too blooped one. Wells kept it in front of him, keeping Callaspo at third, but this brought the top of the order back around. Bourjos also blooped one to left, this one scoring a run, cutting the lead to just one run.
This brought Mike Trout to the plate to face off against Mo. Rivera issued a five pitch walk to Trout, putting the tying run at third, and brought Pujols to the plate. Mo finally managed to end the game by striking out Pujols and everyone was able to exhale. The Yankees came away with a 6-5 win in a crazy, crazy game.
The Yankees will now return home from the west coast to (weirdly) play another Los Angeles team. The Dodgers will come to Yankee Stadium for a two game set, starting Tuesday. Phil Hughes will get the start and first pitch is at 7:05 eastern.
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