Saturday, October 10, 2009

Playoff Reflections: ALDS, Friday

The New York Yankees took game two of their series with Minnesota thanks to Mark Teixiera’s walk-off homer off Jose Mijares in the bottom of the 11th, as they won 4-3, ending a night of high drama.

It was an interesting game, and one as good as the contest the Twins had against the Tigers on Tuesday, but the New Yorkers battled, and the Twins – who had the bases loaded in the top of the 11th – could not muster umpteen chances they had to score.

A.J. Burnett was shaky, as he was wild at times, however, he was surprisingly able to be effective and got a little help from his defense, as Minnesota had two runners on base, with Delmon Young about to score in the fourth inning thanks to a Matt Tolbert base hit; however, base runner Carlos Gomez tried to be greedy and advance to third, but slipped. Moments later, Nick Swisher fielded the ball, threw it to Jeter and tagged out Gomez.

In the sixth inning, pinch-hitter Brendan Harris drove in a run with an RBI-triple off the left wall that got past Johnny Damon to put Minnesota up 1-0.

The Yankees tied the game 1-1 as Alex Rodriguez – the formerly beleaguered hitter in the playoffs – came through with a two out RBI-single. Moments later, Blackburn was yanked, but more damage was averted.

Minnesota took back the lead, 2-1, thanks to a two-out RBI by Nick Punto off reliever Phil Hughes with two runners on base. Well, a minute so or later – after Mariano Rivera came into the game – Denard Span plated in another run with an RBI-single to give them a 3-1 lead.

However, Minnesota would cough up the lead in the bottom of the ninth as Joe Nathan gave up a home run – a two run shot – to Alex Roridguez to tie the game at three. The Minnesota closer also pitched the tenth inning -- and he was terrible -- however, although he let runners get on base, the Yankees could not finish off the Twins at that point.

A.J. Burnett for the Yankees lasted six innings, and gave up a run, but he walked five and struck out five. Nick Blackburn, who started the game for the Twins, went six innings as well and gave up only a run.

Dave Robertson got the win in relief for New York; meanwhile, Mijares took the loss for Minnesota.

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