New York Yankees Show Boston Red Sox They Are for Real in 2009

August 7, 2009   ·     ·   Jump to comments
Article Source: Bleacher Report - New York Yankees

For three months, all Yankee fans had to hear the “0-8” from Red Sox fans. Despite being in first place, the Yankees and their fans were never allowed to really enjoy the first place mark because of the 0-8 record against Boston.

On Thursday night, the 0-8 ended. Because the real New York Yankees of 2009 showed up to Yankee Stadium and not only beat, but pounced and squashed the Red Sox in a much needed game.

Early on, it looked like the same song and dance when Dustin Pedroia hit a solo home run off Joba Chamberlain in the top of the second inning.

But Johnny Damon answered right back in the bottom of the second with a home run off John Smoltz.

Then in the top of the fourth inning, newly acquired Red Sox first basemen Casey Kotchman hit a two-run home run off Joba to put Boston up 3-1. The Yankees looked like they may be in trouble.

Not this time.

The Yankees answered right back with eight runs in the bottom of the fourth to take a commanding 9-3 lead.

Melky Cabrera hit a towering three-run home run to put the Yankees back in the lead 5-3 and they never looked back.

The Yankees were able to knock Smoltz out of the game after 3 1/3 innings. He allowed nine hits, eight runs, walked four, struck out three and his ERA increased to 8.33. Smoltz looks like a shell of his former self.

In came former Yankee reliever Billy Traber, and he was no better. He surrendered a home run in the fourth to Jorge Posada, another three-run homer to dead center field.

It was a good thing the Yankees scored all those runs, because Joba had no control whatsoever.

In the top of the fifth, he walked the bases loaded which increased his walk total to seven and it looked like Boston would jump right back into the game.

Not so fast.

After allowing an RBI single by Mike Lowell, Joba struck out the final two batters to get himself out of major trouble and qualified to pick up another victory.

Joba pitched just five innings, allowed six hits and four runs, walked seven and struck out five, but was given enough run support to get the win, which improves his record to 8-2.

I have a feeling after this game, Joba will be buying his offense some steak dinners for this performance.

In the bottom of the fifth, the Yankees took any momentum the Red Sox had and by force, took it back with two more runs to make it 11-4.

Mark Teixeira’s solo home run off Traber was his 28th of the season, which ties him with Justin Morneau for the league lead.

The Red Sox got a couple runs off rookie pitcher Anthony Claggett in the top of the ninth inning, but it didn’t even matter at that point as the Yankees won decisively 13-6, which pushes their lead in the A.L. East over Boston to 3 1/2 games.

The talk of the Red Sox dominating the Yankees is now over. The Yankees of 2009 have officially showed up now to play the Red Sox.

The Red Sox had the early advantage when the Yankees had injuries and their pitching staff was a mess, but now the Yankees have their true identity, it’s a different game and Thursday’s game proved just that.

The bullpen tonight kept the lead where it needed to be as Boston didn’t have a response to the big inning the Yankees put up and their failed fifth inning to make Joba pay for his lack of control.

If this game were before the break with Joba pitching the way he did tonight, Boston probably wins, but Joba’s gotten so much tougher mentally and the Yankees are playing so much like a team, the Red Sox never could capitalize and it hurt them.

David Robertson looked strong with three strikeouts in 2/3 of an inning. Phil Coke has been a great lefty out of the pen this season.

Rookie Mark Melancon continues to get better as he gets chances to come into games. He pitched 1 1/3 innings of scoreless ball and plunked Pedroia during his stint, but it was more Melancon trying to establish the inside part of the plate. He just lost control of his pitch. Even so, Melancon is looking better with each appearance.

Getting the first win of the series against Boston can only do wonders for the Yankees confidence. But getting the first win in 2009 against the Red Sox must feel like a gigantic weight coming off the back of the Yankees.

Because now, all those walk-off wins do mean something. And every win in 2009 now means much more.

With this win, it shows the Yankees have gained a lot more mental toughness and have established their identity as a team that will never stop quitting and will support each other in every game.

The 2009 Yankees are much tougher than the Yankee teams of the recent past.

The 2009 Yankees team may be even tougher than the Red Sox team now.

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