Saturday, October 10, 2009
Weaver Pitches Angels to 2-0 Lead; Yankees Win in 11
Players of the Day for Friday, October 9, 2009 American League NY Yankees 4 Minnesota Twins 3, 11 innings - The Yankees beat the Twins for the 9th straight time in 2009, putting Minnesota on the brink of elimination, down 2 games to 0 in the best-of-five series, which heads to the Metrodome for game 3. Mark Teixeira delivered a solo homer in the bottom of the 11th inning to snap the 3-3 tie and send Yankee Stadium into a frenzy, but it was Alex Rodriguez who made his teammate's heroics possible, driving in all three Yankee runs with a single in the 6th which pushed across Derek Jeter and a 2-run bomb off Minnesota closer Joe Nathan in the 9th, which sent the game into extra frames. Roriguez is batting a cool .500 over the first two games, with a home run and 5 RBI. Game 3 is Sunday in Minnesota. Starting pitchers for the 7:07 pm EDT start are Andy Pettitte for NY and Carl Pavano, a Yankee cast-off, for the Twins. The Yankees can close out the series with a win. LA Angels 4 Boston Red Sox 1 - For all the swagger and supposed advantage the Red Sox had coming into this series with the Angels, the results have been almost exactly the opposite of what Boston fans thought would happen. For the second night in a row, the Red Sox bats were silenced by exceptional starting and relief pitching as the Angels took a commanding 2-0 lead in their best-of-five series. Jered Weaver allowed two hits and issued two walks in 7 1/3 innings, limiting the Red Sox to just one earned run while fanning seven. The only run came in the 4th, when Victor Martinez singled home Jacoby Elsbury to give Boston a brief 1-0 lead. The Angels countered with a run in the bottom half of the inning, then added three more when they finally got to Boston starter Josh Beckett and used their speed to build an insurmountable lead. The 7th was Beckett's undoing and also exposed Boston's inability to keep base runners in check. The 3-run inning included a walk, a hit batsmen, two steals of second base, a single and a triple. By the time it was over Beckett was in the clubhouse and the Red Sox were thinking about game 3. Weaver, following John Lester's command performance on Thursday, was in control the entire time he was on the mound. Outside of the 4th inning, Boston never had a runner past first base, as Weaver set down the first nine batters in order, had a 1-2-3 inning in the 6th, issued harmless, two-out walks in both the 5th and 7th and finished by striking out J.D. Drew looking to open the 8th. With that, he was relieved by Darren Oliver, who was followed by Kevin Jepsen. Brian Fuentes picked up the save, getting the final two batters after Jepsen gave up a one-out double to Kevin Youkilis in the 9th. The Red Sox have scored just one run in 18 innings against Angels' pitchers. The series shifts to Boston for game 3 on Sunday at 12:07 pm EDT. Scott Kazmir goes for the Angels against Boston's Clay Buchholz. An Angel win sends them to the AL Championship Series. National League Two Saturday games are on tap in the NL. The Dodgers can finish a sweep of the Cardinals with a win in St. Louis. LA leads 2-0, after St. Louis blew game 2 in the ninth inning. The Cards send Joel Piniero to the hill to face LA's Vicente Padilla. Game time is 6:07 pm. The Rockies and Phillies play game 3 in Denver, Colorado, where the forecast is for snow showers and temperatures around the freezing mark. If the game goes off as scheduled, the Phillies will start Pedro Martinez against Colorado's Jason Hammel at 9:37 pm EDT.