Last night's game was my favorite of the season so far. It was better than the 14 inning affair with Oakland or the tight one they pulled out against Tampa Bay. The final score would imply that the game was a blowout, but for six full innings that certainly was not the case. It was a tense pitcher's duel which allowed us to enjoy Phil Hughes' craftsmanship while simultaneously fretting that the Yankees might never score another run.
In fact, the 10 run seventh inning could have very easily been stifled in its infancy. With one out and men on second and third, Jorge Posada (pinch hitting for Ramiro Pena) sliced a flare into shallow left field. After initially hesitating, Josh Anderson approached, but narrowly missed a basket catch.
The scorer awarded Jorge a sacrifice fly and Melky Cabrera scored from second base on the error. David Cone disagreed with the decision, based on where the ball was and the fact that Nick Swisher, not known for his blazing speed, was the runner on 3rd base. Replays indicated that Swish was coming home regardless if the ball was caught or not.
Had the ball been caught and the play made at the plate, the Yanks would have squandered the opportunity and the score would have still been 0-0.
Alas, they did not, and the floodgates opened as they went on to put up 8 more runs in the frame, capped by a Jose Molina grand slam. Mark Melancon, Edwar Ramirez and Jose Veras then combined for 3 innings of scoreless ball and Swisher added a dinger in the top of the 9th. It's not every day that you see a game end 11-0 using only ones and zeros in the box score.
It's been a while since reactions to a Yanks game were fun to read, so if you would like to take a cruise around the Yankeenets, here you go:
Cliff Corcoran of Bronx Banter also enjoyed Hughes' curveball to Placido Polanco in the fifth inning.
Matthew Pouliot at Circling the Bases thinks part of the explanation for Hughes' great outing was Detroit's marginal line-up vs. right handers.
Joe at RAB takes a closer look at Hughes' performance, and relives the 7th inning, play by play.
Tyler Kepner makes a bold prediction.
Joel Sherman says there was a lot to like in what we saw last night, and wonders what continued success from Hughes will force the Yankees to do.