Alex Rodriguez Hits 600th Homer As Yankees Salvage Finale Vs. Blue Jays

August 4, 2010   ·     ·   Jump to comments
Article Source: Bleacher Report - New York Yankees

He didn’t want to wait another day.

Alex Rodriguez didn’t want to have to enter an off-day on Thursday answering more questions about why it was taking so long to hit his 600th career home run.

The Yankees, meanwhile, didn’t want to lose another game.

They didn’t want to be swept at home by the Blue Jays and carry a four-game slide into a big four-game series with the Red Sox this weekend.

A-Rod took care of both problems with a two-run blast to dead-center field off Shaun Marcum in the first inning, appropriately landing on the netting in Monument Park, where one day the slugger may be immortalized with a plaque, or maybe even a monument of his very own.

Rodriguez’s long ball snapped a 17 at-bat hitless streak as well as a 46 at-bat homerless streak, making him the youngest player in Major League history to reach the milestone and propelling the Bombers to a 5-1 victory over Toronto at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

Here are the grades from that contest:


Joe Girardi, Manager: (A) After tinkering with a few different lineups since the arrival of Lance Berkman and Austin Kearns, Girardi finally found one that worked, burying the struggling Berkman and Curtis Granderson deep in the order where they belong.

The skipper pulled starter Phil Hughes a little early with one out in the sixth and only 99 pitches, but the bullpen delivered 3 2/3 scoreless innings to make Girardi look like a genius.


Derek Jeter, SS: (A+) Overshadowed by A-Rod’s historic bomb was the captain’s 4-for-4 day, which included two doubles and three runs. But my favorite at-bat of the afternoon by Jeter came in the fifth inning when he laid down a beautiful bunt to advance Brett Gardner to third with less than two outs and even picked up a hit on the play.


Nick Swisher, RF: (D) On the other hand, Swisher did not put down a bunt with Jeter at second and nobody out in the third and wasn’t able to advance the runner as he flew out to left field. Situational hitting is actually one of the only things Swisher hasn’t done well this season as he has gotten the runner home from third with less than two outs only seven out of 22 times.


Mark Teixeira, 1B: (A+) Teixeira had a big day, doubling home Jeter in the third and smacking a two-run single with the bases loaded in the fifth.


Alex Rodriguez, 3B: (A) A-Rod should go on a bit of a tear now that the monkey is off his back.


Robinson Cano, 2B: (C-) Cano snapped an 0-for-13 slide with a single in the eighth. He’s now hitting .325, his lowest mark since May 18.


Jorge Posada, C: (D) Posada handled all five pitchers well, but he went 0-for-4 and was struck by a couple of foul balls behind the plate, a place he will see a lot more of now that Berkman is serving as the Yankees’ primary DH. That’s a concern for Posada, who is not a good catcher and is getting older. New York does not want to lose his bat from the lineup because of an injury suffered while catching.


Lance Berkman, DH: (F) Berkman was robbed a couple times by Blue Jays first baseman Lyle Overbay, but the bottom line is that the former Astro went 0-for-4 and is hitting just .133 since joining the Bombers.


Curtis Granderson, CF: (B+) Granderson went 1-for-3, stole his ninth bag of the season and made a nice play against the wall in left-center field in the sixth, but he struck out twice.


Brett Gardner, LF: (B+) Not surprisingly, Gardner looked a little better in left field than Kearns did the previous night. The speedster went 1-for-3 with a double and a run scored.


Phil Hughes, SP: (A-) For only the second time since June 2, the right-hander allowed fewer than three runs, as he was charged with just one in 5 1/3 innings, but Hughes’ high pitch count prevented him from pitching deep into the game.


Boone Logan, RP: (B-) Logan hit the first batter he faced, Adam Lind, but then retired the next two Jays to escape the sixth.


Joba Chamberlain, RP: (B) Joba has been demoted from the eighth to the seventh inning. If he continues to pitch poorly, he may work his way back to the first so he can start again.


David Robertson, RP: (B+) Robertson struck out two and walked one in a scoreless eighth.


Mariano Rivera, RP: (B) Rivera hit a batter in a scoreless ninth.


Yankees Overall Grade: (A) The Bombers really needed this one. They didn’t want to stew over a four-game losing streak on an off-day entering a big set with Boston.


Follow me on Twitter at JordanHarrison .

Jordan Schwartz is one of Bleacher Report’s New York Yankees and College Basketball Featured Columnists. His book Memoirs of the Unaccomplished Man is available at amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, and authorhouse.com.

Jordan can be reached at jordanschwartz2003@yahoo.com

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