[WPA data via FanGraphs]
1. The Yankees got it going in the bottom of the first, as Nick Johnson jumped on a 1-1 Ervin Santana fastball and crushed it to the right field bleachers to give the Yankees a 1-0 lead.
2. In the top of the third, Derek Jeter followed with a solo shot of his own to right-center
3. The next inning, the Yankees stretched the lead to 3-0, as a bases loaded infield single from Jeter plated Curtis Granderson.
4. Andy Pettitte pitched himself into a bit of a jam in the fifth, allowing a leadoff single to Jeff Mathis followed by a walk to Brandon Wood. Erick Aybar's groundout to third put both runners in scoring position, but Pettitte wriggled out of trouble by inducing a pop up from Bobby Abreu and a groundout from Torii Hunter
5. The Angels threatened again in the sixth, with back-to-back singles from Kendry Morales and Juan Rivera leaving runners on the corners with one out. Pettitte then induced a double play ball off the bat of Howie Kendrick, costing the Angels 11.9% of Win Expectancy.
6. The Yankees made it 5-0 in the bottom half of the inning. Walks from Nick Swisher, Nick Johnson, and Mark Teixeira loaded the bases. An infield single from A-Rod plated the Nicks. Raise your hand if you thought you'd see Nick Johnson score from second on an infield single this year. Yeah, me neither.
7. The Angels got on the board in the top of eighth, as Kendry Morales blasted a solo shot into the second deck in right field. The Yankees responded in the bottom half. Nick Johnson led off with a double and came around to score on a Jorge Posada two bagger. Curtis Granderson continued his hot start by driving Robinson Cano home with a base hit. Though seemingly pile-on runs at the time, they would prove crucial.
8. David Robertson had a rough top of the ninth. He gave up three straight singles to start the inning, the second of which was supposed to be a bunt attempt. After retiring Aybar for the inning's first out, D-Rob surrendered a grandslam to Bobby Abreu to make it 7-5. Even so, the Yankees' Win Expectancy still stood at 95.9%. Mariano Rivera came on to get Torii Hunter and old friend Hideki Matsui to shut the door.
IFs, ANDs & BUTs
- Outstanding job by the Yankees with the ring ceremony. From the 27 championship flags flying from the Stadium, to the presence of living legends Yogi Berra and Whitey Ford, to the surprise guest appearance by Jerry Hairston Jr, who took a cross country red eye from San Diego last night to spend his off day getting his ring, it was well done. If only Bernie didn't bounce the first pitch, and if only YES wasn't late in getting back on the air for it.
- Extremely classy move by the Yankees to give World Series MVP Hideki Matsui the final ring. It was also very nice to see the entirety of the Yankees come forward to greet Matsui after he received his ring. While that move spoke volumes of how Matsui's former teammates feel about him, the fans took the opportunity to express their gratitude with a standing ovation for Matsui's plate appearance in the first inning. Nice job by Andy Pettitte to take his time and step off, giving Matsui an opportunity to tip his batting helmet.
- As nice as the reception was for Matsui, the best moment of the day was to see Gene Monahan in attendance. As we mentioned this morning, Monahan has been away from the team battling illness, reportedly cancer. His appearance today was the first of the season. It was very poignant that he received the first ring in the ceremony and touching to see the warm reception from the fans and how much it moved Geno.
- The very first ring of the day was presented to George Steinbrenner. Joe Girardi and Derek Jeter visited his suite early in the afternoon to deliver his ring. Hal said his pops was very appreciative.
- Another solid outing for Andy Pettitte, who was very sharp through four and gutted through jams in the fifth and sixth. It was good to see that Pettitte was able to receive his ring on the field before heading to the bullpen to warm up.
- Nine walks by Angels pitching today, including three to Nick Swisher and two each to Nick Johnson and Mark Teixeira.
- Robinson Cano continues to swing a hot bat, picking up a double and a single, and making good contact on his fly out to the right field warning track.
- Nick Swisher has been replaced for defense in three consecutive games and five of the last six. I know he can look bad at times and that his arm isn't great, but as we discussed a couple weeks back, he's not a terrible defender.
- Chan Ho Park looked good for his second consecutive outing. Perhaps those who were ready to write him off following his Opening Night performance might have reacted a tad too quickly.
- David Robertson's ERA is going to take a looooong time to recover from today.
- I don't want to jump to conclusions after just one game, but Torii Hunter looks like he's aged in dog years defensively. He got poor jumps on about three or four fly balls today. Perhaps the wind played a factor, but that doesn't explain away his failure to cut off Nick Johnson's eight inning shot in the right-center gap.
See you in the morning Fackers.