Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Live from Yankee Stadum: Nix Crucial to Double-Dip Sweep

It wasn't easy for the Yankees, but they swept the Toronto Blue Jays in the day/night double-header to lift their winning streak to three games while Boston and Baltimore continue to slide. The night portion of the double-header was more of a nail biter for the Yankees. They are currently playing a Blue Jays team that has nothing to lose as they are more than out of contention for any postseason spot. The Yankees' jobs were to grind out at bats, which they did and they looked natural doing so. Phil Hughes took another step in the right direction, delivering six innings of two run baseball. Hughes left the game the losing pitcher of record but a buddy of his would bail him out twice. Hughes is pitching well, but the runs he is allowing are too much for the Yankees to make a comeback with so naturally his record reflects that. On days like tonight though, Hughes was able to get out of jams and if not for a wild pitch Hughes would be able to come out of the game with at least a tie. Instead, Hughes' efforts were again wasted in the short term but his offense was able to rally to take the nightcap from the Blue Jays who find themselves deep in the AL East basement.

Jayson Nix was the player of the game after making a few key plays in the first game too. Nix went 2-4 and had the last two Yankee RBI which would prove to be crucial for the Bombers. In the seventh inning Nix homered to left to tie the game against Buehrle then came up big in the ninth with one out after Ichiro pinch ran for Mark Reynolds who walked. Ichiro advanced to second base on a sac bunt from Eduardo Nunez then stole third base with Nix at the plate. Jayson didn't waste any time and drove Ichiro in with the winning run in the ninth inning and the Yankees were walk-off winners yet again this year. However, Nix wasn't the only position player who had a good night as Austin Romine joined in on the catcher's party and had himself a 3-3 night with a double and a run scored. The Sunday game against the Red Sox has injected some life into the Yankees (no pun intended). They were able to rally around Alex Rodriguez on Sunday against Boston then came from behind in two straight games against the Jays to take both games of the double dip. My post from the first game was right. I said that either Phil Hughes would pitch well enough for his team to get the win or Buehrle would finally record a victory against the Yankees. Buehrle lost yet again to the Yankees and Phil Hughes pitched well enough for the team to get a win.

Things don't get any easier for the Yankees tomorrow evening as they get set to face reigning Cy Young winner RA Dickey and the Blue Jays for the third of four games at Yankee Stadium. Adam Warren will make the start for the Yankees. Warren has almost exclusively pitched out of the bullpen but was an above-average starter for the Yankees AAA club last year before getting promoted to New York out of spring training.

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