Saturday, October 6, 2007

PLAYOFFS: Yankees Bugged Out; Red Sox Walk Off

Cleveland 2 NY Yankees 1 - The Indians gained a 2-0 edge over the Yankees in this division playoff series, thanks to the masterful pitching of rookie Fausto Carmona (right) and a swarm of midges that pestered reliever Joba Chamberlain into an eighth inning from hell, in which he allowed Cleveland to tie the game without a hit. Chamberlain walked Grady Sizemore to open the inning and scored when the Yankee rookie uncorked his second wild pitch of the inning as the tiny bugs swarmed him and the other players unrelentingly. Melky Cabrera had given the Yanks an early lead with a solo homer off Carmona, one of just three hits off the rookie starter. Carmona was otherwise brilliant, lasting 9 innings before being lifted for Rafael Perez, who pitched a perfect 10th and 11th innings. In the bottom of the 11th, Travis Hafner singled home Kenny Lofton from third with the game winner after Luis Vizcaino had loaded the bases with a pair of singles and an intentional walk. The Indians were a miserable 2-for-18 with runners in scoring position, but managed to score when it counted most. The Yankees, for all of their supposed prowess at the plate, haven't produced, scoring just 4 runs in the opening two games. As a team they are batting a less-than-impressive .121 (8-66). Game 3 is set for Sunday at Yankee Stadium, with Cleveland's Jake Westbrook on the mound to face the Yankees' Roger Clemens. Boston 6 LA Angels 3 - Manny Ramirez (right) launched a mammoth 3-run homer over the green monster in the bottom of the ninth to put the Red Sox up 2 games to none over the LA Angels. Ramirez, who had been hitless in two previous at bats, sent the Fenway crowd into a frenzied finale as the series moves to California for game 3. Angels' starter Kelvim Escobar lasted only 5 innings, while his counterpart, Daisuke Matsuzaka, endured just 4 2/3. Both pitchers allowed three earned runs and between them, issued 8 walks, five by Escobar. Boston can wrap up the series with a win on Sunday, with Curt Schilling facing the Angles' Jared Weaver.

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