Chien-Ming Wang has been every bit the Yankee ace this season. Time and time again, he's come up huge when the Yanks needed him the most. For the better part of the season, Wang has not been himself. A nasty blister/nail problem has forced him to move away from the deadly sinker and rely on change-ups and sliders to battle his way through games.
Tonight, we're seeing the old Wanger. Through four innings here's his line: 4 IP, 1 hit, 0 walks, 1 K, 9 ground outs.
The return of the Wanger's sinker is great, great news for the Yanks. Now, if they can only push a couple more runs across, Seattle will remain in the rear-view mirror.
I caught up to the game on my DVR, so I'll post a couple of updates throughout the game. Jorge is the front runner for offensive player of the game, he had a laser dinger for the lone run of the game. 1-0, Yanks.
One last thing to keep in mind, Joba is probably available for 2 innings tonight. No matter what, he won't pitch tonight and tomorrow, add in an off day on Thursday and he automatically has two days of rest if he pitches tonight and he's available for the first game of the K.C. series. Plus, he hasn't pitched in 4 days, so Joe really needs him to get some work.
UPDATE (Bot 6) Holy crap. That was the longest ball I've ever seen hit into the upper deck in Yankee stadium (left-field upper deck, that is). A-Bomb is an understatement. 2-0, Yanks. Two clutch, two-out RBI singles from Cano and Betemit. 4-0, Yanks.
UPDATE (Top 7) Looong, home run by Beltre, but Wanger escapes with another double-play ball. 4-1, Yanks.
UPDATE (Bot 7) As sweet as candy. Abreu bomb. 5-1, Yanks. Hold your breath, Beltre's considerable girth just landed on A-Rod's right ankle. He's staying in the game, fingers crossed that it doesn't swell up over night. Frankenstein delivers a 2-run single. 7-1, Yanks. Two-run double for Cano. Officially a laugher. 9-1, Yanks. At this point, I don't think you need to use Joba. Save him for tomorrow night. I realize he needs work, but this game is well in hand, tomorrow is crucial. Another two-out RBI, this time by Melky. 10-1, Yanks. Jeter follows suit. 11-1, Yanks. A-Rod is out for Alberto Gonzalez, but it's probably not injury-related, just a garbage time substitution.
UPDATE (Top 8) Wang got pulled off the mound after getting one out in the eighth. It looked like some kind of an injury, but nothing serious, again, just being cautious. The Viz is officially cooked. 0.1 innings, 2 earned. Out in favor of Chris Britton. 11-3, Yanks.
UPDATE (Bot 8) Hip, Hip!!! 12-3, Yanks. Posada just sewed up player of the game honors (unless Cano hits one out). The Mariners basically have their entire AAA roster on the field now.
UPDATE (Top 9) Thankfully, Joba is not coming into this game. He's getting some throwing done in the pen, and they'll save him for tomorrow night.
Player of The Game: Jorge Posada, 4 for 4, 4 runs, 2 RBI, 1 walk, 2 home runs.
The Yanks regain their two-game lead over the Mariners, and extend their lead to 3.5 games over Detritus. The Sox lead over the Yanks stands at 7.
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