The only offense for the Yankees tonight came in the third inning off starter Aaron Harang when the Bombers connected for two home runs; one by Robinson Cano with two men on base and the second coming from Mark Teixeira following Cano's long ball. The Yankees would get more runs in the inning by RBI singles from Vernon Wells and Ichiro. If not for the third inning the Yankees would have been blanked. Following Harang's departure from the game, Blake Beaven came into the game and pitched a scoreless 6.2 innings to give the Mariners length and effectiveness. Coming off the Mariners' sixteen inning loss yesterday against the White Sox, you could tell that Seattle was out of gas when facing the Yankees pitching. The Mariners scored only one run as Phil Hughes was sensational.
Phil Hughes was magnificent in his start tonight. I've always said that Hughes would thrive in a park like Safeco Field and tonight, my opinion was correct as Hughes delivered seven solid innings. In his start, Phil allowed one earned run and struck out seven batters, five of which came on swinging strikes meaning Hughes was delivering nasty pitches to put batters away. Hughes remains a mystery for the Yankees as he continues his Jekyll/Hyde trend. In one start Hughes pitches the way he did tonight, and in the next he allows five runs and doesn't get out of the fourth inning. If he pitched the majority of his games in the AL West, Hughes would be competing for a Cy Young award. Being that he will be a free agent at the end of the year I would take a close look at Hughes if I'm a team playing in a large park.
The Yankees will try to go for five wins in a row tomorrow night against Jeremy Bonderman, who has been out of the Majors for a couple of years. The Mariners task won't get any easier as the Yankees will send Hiroki Kuroda to the mound in a spacious ballpark. Kuroda has pitched like an ace this season and with larger dimensions, he too has the ability to throw a shutout against a largely weak-hitting team.