At least the offense only went into its shell for one game. Facing the hottest pitcher in the league, in fact, Ugando was 7-0 with an ERA of 1 something against the rest of baseball, the Yanks knocked him out in the 2nd inning. This time, with the bases loaded the Yanks came through as Nunez had a big hit to get the first run across and then both Granderson and Tex got on top of high 95 mph fastballs that were balls and ripped them to RF. This is no easy task on a good fastball so the Yanks were clearly looking fastball and got it. About 4 weeks ago I was mentioning how Tex was having trouble getting on top of the high fastball...he didn't have trouble yesterday.
It took an injury to Jeter to finally have the top of the lineup the way I have been asking for it since the All Star break last year...and the Yanks didn't disappoint. Gardner collected 3 hits and has his OPS up to .788 which is great for him because his defense is worth a ton in LF and normally we would be adding a lot because of all his extra SB's. Unfortunately, that part is not helping as of yet, but by the end of the year it will.
There was another subtle change in the lineup and that saw Posada ahead of Swisher. I would expect to see that against righties for a little while.
The real question is whether the Yanks leave Gardner in the 1 spot against a lefty. I could go either way on this as Gardner is better against righties. I would not touch 2-5, but we could put Swisher in that spot against a lefty. His OPS against lefties is 1.014 so he has been phenomenal against lefties (only .599 against righties).
This is a good chance for Nunez to show what he can do...time for him to step up, he has some tools so let's see if he can hold his own and play at least as well as Jeter. I expect to see more range and quickness defensively, better tagging around the base and probably an extra error compared to Jeter. Offensively, I would be disappointed if Nunez couldn't match what Jeter was doing.
Cervelli is simply awful right now and with Martin's back a problem, I would look at 2 options. 1) see if Posada can catch at all. I know the Yanks have been reluctant, but I am not sure why. Does anyone think that catching 5-10 games a year will cripple him? If nothing else, why wouldn't Posada be their emergency catcher? if so, get him a game or 2 so when you do it he is ready. 2) Take a look at bringing up Montero and get him some action. I was never a fan of Cervelli, but I have totally given up on him. I like his energy, but he simply is not good.
Boston lost 4-0 so we are 1.5 back after this 12-4 victory.