Carl Pavano is apparently the toast of the town after allowing 10 base runners in 5 innings of work. I guess a 5.40 ERA is reason to celebrate this waste of oxygen. To be fair, Pavano probably would've only given up 2 runs if not for an asinine play by Damon in center. I probably shouldn't be so hard on the guy, but it's going to take a lot more than one mediocre start to make me forget the past four years. Anyway, the Yanks won
, which is all that matters, 5-3.
The Wild Card race got a little more interesting tonight. Both Sox lost, and Minnesota is in the process of losing out in LA. Meaning, the Yanks are 5 games behind Boston, 4.5 behind Chicago and 5 behind Minnesota. Given the remaining schedules, I'll be shocked if the Twins don't win the Central. They have a cake schedule the rest of the way.
As for the WC, well the next 4 games are going to tell us if the Yanks have a shot. They need to finish off this sweep tomorrow afternoon. Rasner will face Daniel Cabrera, who seems to dominate the Yanks and no one else. Then after an off day on Monday the Sox come to town for a three game set. It'll be Pettitte vs. Wakefield, Ponson vs. Byrd and Mussina vs. Lester. If the Yanks can get really hot right now, and win the next 4 games they'll be 2 games behind Boston with 29 left to play, at worst. If they take 2 of three from the Sox and win tomorrow, they'll be no worse than 4 games behind Boston. That's doable.
As for the ChiSox, well, they have one more left at Tampa tomorrow (Buehrle vs. Sonnanstine), then a three-game set in Baltimore, followed by a trip to Boston. That's a golden opportunity for the Yanks to gain ground on one of the teams they're chasing.
It has to start tomorrow though. Backslide a game against the O's and things become much more difficult. Get through this four-game set in good shape and the Yanks have another 3 against Boston and a 4-game set against the ChiSox. There's a good chance they could control their own fate, and that's really all you can ask for after the brand of ball they've played after the All Star break.
Pavano definitely earned himself another start today, let's just hope he's sharper on Friday against the Blue Jays. By the way, how nice does it feel to have Matsui in the 7 hole? The lineup is so much tougher with him down there and Cano batting eighth. Girardi has used basically the same lineup every day since Matsui came back. If there was ever an opportunity for him to mess with success, it would be tomorrow. A day game after a night game. Please, please, please don't do it, Joe.Player of The Game:
Giambo. He gave the Yanks the lead for good with his two-run bomb.Team Record: