Yanks Rally Late For 5-3 Win

After a successful home stand, the Yankees hit the road and started a four game set in Detroit tonight.  They sent veteran Bartolo Colon who has been red hot to the hill and the Tigers countered with fire-baller Justing Verlander.  In what turned out to be a very close game, the Yankees won a tight one by a score of 5-3.

(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

Bartolo Colon did not pitch the way he did on Wednesday night against the White Sox, but you can’t expect that from him every time.  He was once again fantastic though as he went seven innings, allowing three runs on seven hits and no walks while striking out seven.  His two mistakes were made to Alex Avila.  In both instances, a 2-seamer got away from him and leaked toward the middle of the plate and Avila went opposite field for a home run.  Other than that, he was very good once again.

The one thing that I took from Colon’s performance tonight is how economically he worked.  He only need 97 pitches (67 strikes) to complete the seven frames of work and always seemed to throw strikes when he needed to.  But they weren’t just strikes, they were quality strikes that were tough to hit and put hitters in bad situations.  It was also nice to see him strike out Austin Jackson three times making the Yanks look like winners in that trade.

In a 3-3 game in the eighth, Joe Girardi wen to Joba Chamberlain to keep the game tied and that’s exactly what he did.  He had very good breaking stuff tonight, and that’s how he got his one strike out.  After they took the lead in the top of the ninth, Mariano Rivera was brought in and nailed down his eleventh save of the season in 1-2-3 fashion only needing nine pitches to do so.  It makes bullpen management so much easier when your starters are going deep into games.

The Bombers offense once again got off to an early lead.  With the bases loaded and two outs, Jorge Posada hit a ground-rule double to make it a 2-0 game in the first.  In the second, Eduardo Nunez laced a ball over Ryan Raburn’s head in left field which scored Brett gardner from first, but he was thrown out at third for the first out of the inning which killed any opportunity of scoring for the rest of the inning.

(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

Speaking of which, the Yanks wasted too many chances to add on extra runs.  They only went 2-for-14 with runners in scoring position.  In the fourth, they had runners on the corners and one out for Derek Jeter and Curtis Granderson and they couldn’t score.  In the sixth, they had runners on first and second and one out for Nunez and Jeter and couldn’t score.  In the seventh, Posada was given another opportunity to come through with runners on second and third with two out and struck out.  And then in the eighth, they had Russell Martin on third with Nunez and Jeter coming up and couldn’t score.  This wouldn’t get it done in many other games.

However, they finally came through in the ninth as Nick Swisher singled in Mark Teixeira and then Alex Rodriguez scored on a passed ball, giving Mo plenty of breathing room to be comfortable.  Swisher had a big night going 2-for-4 with a walk and the game-winning hit and so did Brett Gardner who went 1-for-1 with two walks.  He’s really starting to get that OBP up, which is great to see.  Jeter went 2-for-5, but one of the hits was an infield single and he was 0-for-3 with a runner on third base.

Grady sliding in just ahead of Alex Avila's tag to make it a 3-0 game. (Jeff Kowalsky/European Pressphoto Agency)

So obviously it wasn’t a great night, but it was good enough for the win.  Bartolo Colon kept the ball rolling with another strong effort from a Yankee starter and the Yankee offense was able to get Verlander out pretty early making him throw 127 pitches in only six innings of work.  The second game will be tomorrow night with first pitch at 7:05 on YES.

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