Andy Pettitte was shaky in his return from the DL, but got a big lift from Mark Teixeira, who hit a grand slam, as the Yankees went on to beat the Indians 7-4 in the first game of a three game series at Yankee Stadium on Monday.
Pettitte was in good form through the first four innings, and had a 4-1 lead thanks to Teixeira’s slam, but things fell apart in the fifth when a run scored on a sac fly and then two more on a double by Carlos Santana. That tied it at 4-4 and Shawn Kelley had to come in to stop the damage.
The Yankees retook the lead when Brett Gardner singled to center and drove in two runs. The second run only scored when Justin Masterson improperly cut off the relay throw which killed a close play. They made it 7-4 when Travis Hafner homered to deep right in the seventh.
• Hafner was just 3-for-29 when he hit that home run. He’s hit just .133/.257/.267 in his last 10 games. Hopefully with Teixeira and Youkilis coming back, he’ll start hitting again with the pressure off him.
• Pettitte’s line: 4.2 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 0 HR. His ERA is now 4.17 with a 7.0 K/9 and 3.0 BB/9 in nine starts. He did break down so suddenly that it makes me concerned that they potentially rushed him from his back trapezius injury. They also changed his workout routine to force him to pitch less and that certainly could have played a role as well.
• Austin Romine picked up a pair of hits, and a stolen base, and is 3-for-4 in the last two games. It’s only three hits, but he has really struggled offensively in the majors. He’s only hitting .159/.178/.205 even after a couple of good games.
• Lyle Overbay didn’t embarrass himself in the right field and they pulled him for a defensive replacement after he went 1-for-3 with a walk. That’s probably good enough for another start in right field. If it keeps working out that could be big for the Yankees as Overbay has hit .287/.333/.535 against right handed pitchers.
• Nick Swisher got a nice ovation by the crowd before the game. He was 5-for-16 against the Yankees in Cleveland, but he was 0-for-4 on Monday.
• Asdrubal Cabrera left the game in the fifth inning with a strained right quad that is likely going to land him on the DL. At the very least, the Yankees are fortunate because they might avoid him for a couple of days.
• Buy Yankees tickets to see Nick Swisher Tuesday and Wednesday nights.
Photo credit: (June 3, 2013 – Source: Jason Szenes/Getty Images North America).