Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Where There's a Hill, There's a Way

The Jays and Yankees were hooking up Tuesday for game 2 of their series.

Before the game, the Yankees took their game day practice. Because of their bad play in games this year, they work on just the fundamentals. Their was nothing fundamental about the game.

In the home-half of the 1st, Alex Rios a lead-off single and went to 2nd off an error. He then went to 3rd off a steal. Vernon Wells then drove him in to give the Jays the 1-run lead. For the next few innings, it was a pitchers duel between Shawn Marcum and Andy Pettitte. The next 5 innings went scoreless. But after Shaun Marcum was pulled, Scott Downs came in in the 7th. The 1st batter he faced hit a homer off of him. It was then tied 1-1. But in the bottom half of the 7th, Aaron Hill was on 3rd. As Pettitte winded up, Hill sprinted home. He was called safe and the Jays had the lead. But after the Yankees tied it up again in the 8th, Alex Rios hit a sacrifice fly to the outfield that brought home the eventual winning run. The final score was 3-2.

After the game, all the talk was about Aaron Hill's steal of home. "We mentioned that if a situation came up, a guy on third, obviously [Pettitte] has his back to us," Hill said. "It was just the right place at the right time, I guess. [Butterfield] told me, 'If we get to a 1-1 count, we're going to go ahead and try it.' I started to get a little nervous and then I was like, 'All right, let's go.' Luckily, it worked out."

''I definitely felt my heart beating,'' Hill said of his approach once the play was put on. ''I've never done it before and I didn't know what was going to happen. I just pictured the umpire calling me safe to hopefully give me a little better boost.''

Pettitte also talked about what he could of done to stop the steal. ''I didn't think you could lose an American League ballgame like that,'' said Pettitte. ''To be out of the stretch, what can you say? It was embarrassing.''

The Yankees have been in a free-fall all season and it isn't stopping. They are tied with Tampa for last in the division, and have virtually no pitching.

“It’s tough to keep it positive, to tell you the truth,” Posada said. “You try to focus on things that are meaningful, like good pitching by Andy tonight. You continue to think ahead. But it’s really tough right now.”

“We haven’t been able to string together hits,” Derek Jeter said. “We get one guy on, and that’s about it.”

“There’s a mountain to climb,” Manager Joe Torre said. “Everybody feels it. I’d like to be able to come in tomorrow and think of something that’s going to all of a sudden lighten the load. That’s my job.”

The Jays will look for a sweep on Wednesday.

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