Friday, October 30th, 2009 | MLB, New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies, Sports
Not that it was a must-win, but the Yankees must sure be thrilled that they defeated the Phillies 3-1 on Thursday night at the new Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. Going down 2-0 and heading to Philadelphia would not have meant the end of the World Series, but it would have been a mighty hill to have to climb to win 2 out of 3 in Philly and then 2 at home in New York to pull off a 7-game World Series win.
A.J. Burnett’s 7-inning gem allowed Manager Joe Girardi to keep his bullpen off the field. Burnett gave up just 1 earned run on 4 hits and 2 walks while striking out 9. After 108 pitches, Girardi called upon Mariano Rivera to get the Yankees a 6-out save and preserve the 3-1 lead. Rivera came up big in the 8th after 2 men were on with just 1 out. Rivera induced Chase Utley – the Phillies’ Game 1 hero – to hit into an inning-ending double play to end the threat. Rivera allowed the Phillies to get the tying run to the plate when Raul Ibanez doubled with 2-out, but he struck out Matt Stairs swinging to end the game. And then the celebration began in the Bronx.
Pedro Martinez did about as well as he could given the circumstances – he pitched 6 innings, giving up just 3 earned runs on 6 hits and 2 walks. He also had 8 strikeouts. But he gave up solo home runs to Mark Teixeira in the 4th inning and Hideki Matsui in the 6th inning that gave the Yankees a 2-1 lead. Martinez even started the 7th inning, but Manager Charlie Manuel removed him after he gave up leadoff singles to Jerry Hairston, Jr. and Melky Cabrera. Brett Gardner – who ran for Hairston – ended up scoring an insurance run when Jorge Posada singled off of reliever Chan Ho Park.
Andy Pettitte will square off against Cole Hamels at Citizens Bank Ballpark on Saturday night in Philadelphia. And as it stands now, it looks like we could see a rematch of Game 1 on Sunday night, as CC Sabathia and Cliff Lee are penciled in to start in Game 4 of the World Series on Sunday night. This is really turning into the Classic Epic World Series Battle that we hoped for…
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