Saturday, June 9, 2012
The spotlight of the Subway Series’ first installment pulled into the station at just the right time for the Yankees, who happen to be playing their best baseball of the season thus far.
Mark Teixeira hit a key two-run homer to back another strong Phil Hughes effort, and the Yankees’ bullpen locked down the final eight outs to secure a 4-2 victory over the Mets on Saturday in the Bronx.
“Starting pitching has been the key,” said Teixeira, who cracked a go-ahead shot off Dillon Gee in the sixth inning. “That’s baseball for you. We feel really good about our starting pitching right now, and because of that, we can just go out there, play defense and score enough runs to win the game.”
The Yankees have won 12 of their last 16 games to move a season-high eight games over .500, as Hughes became the latest in a line of starters to get the job done. His outing improved the Bombers’ starters to 6-1 with a 1.84 ERA over their last eight outings.
You have to love seeing back-to-back strong performances by Hughes (although, of course, it wouldn’t be a Hughes start if he didn’t give up a home run). Once again, the Yankees lived and died (in this case lived) by the home run ball. They still have a hard time with runners in scoring position (especially the bases loaded). Still, as Teix notes, so long as the pitching is there, there is enough offense to keep winning.
As a side note, Brett Gardner suffered a setback in his rehab of his elbow injury (of course he did). His return date is unknown but it sounds like at the earliest it will be after the All-Star Break. Best bet is that Gardner will not have an elbow by October.
Also, Kuroda says he plans on making his next start. That’s good news. So the only question will be if he will be on the 15-Day Disabled List next week or the 60-Day.
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