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Sixers

, all the time

So big, in fact, it won't fit on one page. Here are the bullets, check after the jump for my full take on all the events:
  • Joba out-duels Josh Beckett on a night when both pitched like aces.
  • The Yanks swing a huge trade without giving up Hughes, Kennedy or A-Jax
  • Kevin Youkilis is almost hit, again. Throws a fit, again. No shock there.
  • Mo comes up huge in extended work.
Let's start with the game.

Joba was dominant, on a night when absolutely had to be. Josh Beckett threw the type of game we've come to expect from him in big situations, and he did it without truly nasty stuff, which was very impressive. The Yanks managed 9 hits and 1 walk off the righty, but only pushed one run across and that came on a dribbler hit against the shift by the Giambino.

Joba was really only in danger of yielding a run once tonight, and the Melk Man brought that minor threat to a screeching halt. Mike Lowell led off the bottom of the second with a single off the monster. J.D. Drew was up next, and he smoked a line drive to right center, Melky got a great jump on the ball and made a diving catch. If he doesn't make the catch that ball is going to the wall in center and both guys might've scored. Lowrie then hit into a double play to end the inning. From that point on, Joba only allowed one more hit, a bad-hop single to Ortiz off the lip of the grass and over Cano's shoulder.

In the bottom of the 7th there were some minor fireworks, and another first for professional baseball. With the score 1-0 Yanks and one man out, Kevin Youkilis stepped to the plate. Joba worked him away on the first two pitches, then came inside. Way inside. The fastball sailed up towards Youkilis' noggin, but caught the bat for a foul ball. Youkilis did his typical sissy complainer routine and both benches were warned. Elias may need to check this, but I believe this is the first time a warning has been issued on a foul ball. Much like Proctor and Joba were the first players to be suspended for almost hitting a batter. Joba then proceeded to make Youkilis look silly on two sliders away for the strike out.

Now, before we go any further, let me say this. The situation absolutely did not call for a bean ball. No way. A 1-0 game, Joba's cruising. The last thing he wants to do is hit Youkilis in that situation. But when you saw it happen, and you saw the replay 20 times, it just looked like he was trying to hit him. I don't know why, Youkilis looked helpless with the bat tonight, and he hasn't particularly killed the Yanks. Maybe Joba just doesn't like him. If I was pitching against him, I'd probably plunk, but that's me. Maybe it has to do with the fact that he leans out over the plate and dunks balls to right. Who knows. It makes no sense that he'd throw at him there, but that's exactly what it looked like he did. Either way, I'm glad the Yanks fired the first shot over the bow in this series, intentional or not.

Back to the game. Farnsworth came in to pitch the eighth and after a lead-off single to Lowrie, he got Varitek (who is looking more and more cooked with each passing day) to pop out to short. Then some bad luck/decision making on a dribbler up the first base line put Coco Crisp on first. Girardi popped out of the dugout and got Mo in he game right there. Correct decision on Girardi's part. Farnsworth has been great, but this game was too important to leave up to him. You have the best closer ever in the pen, get him in to make Joba's outstanding night stand up.

Mo faced 6 batters, he struck out three of them looking, one grounded back to the pitcher, one flew out to right and one singled. He's now 26/26 in save opportunities, he's also only allowed 1 earned run in those games. I'd say he earned the right to close the All Star game with his performance this season, there was nothing historical about it, nor was it simply because the game was played in Yankee stadium. He's been the best closer the entire year.

Player of The Game: Joba. 7 innings, 3 hits, 0 runs, 1 walk, 9 Ks
Team Record: 57-45
Damon: Not a one.

And now the trade...

Ken Rosenthal has the confirmation, here are the details:

Yankees get
  • Xavier Nady - 29 years-old, with these numbers so far in '08: .330/.383/.535 he has a career OPS of .793 and he's signed through 2009.
  • Damaso Marte - 33 years-old, 3.47 ERA in 46 2/3 innings, 47 Ks, 1.16 WHIP. $6M option for '09.
Yankees give
  • Ross Ohlendorf (Baseball America ranked him as the Yanks #9 prospect heading into the season)
  • Jose Tabata (Baseball America ranked him as the Yanks #3 prospect heading into the season)
  • Dan McCutchen
  • Jeff Karstens (The last two players were updated on Sat. morning)
My thoughts: The Yankees filled their number one need and as an added bonus bagged one of the best lefties on the market. They accomplished all of this without really giving up anyone who was considered a big part of their future. There were high hopes for both Ohlendorf and Tabata heading into the season, but Ohlendorf's performance at the big-league level was sporadic, to put it kindly, while Tabata had a hard time adjusting to AA, on the field and off.

Tabata is extremely young, and he has a boatload of potential, but he's further away from the bigs than anyone thought before the season. Five years down the road the Pirates may look like geniuses, but it's just as likely that he'll never make the bigs at this point. The Yankees got their right-handed bat and lefty reliever without giving up a single crown jewel of the system. You have to love a deal like that.