The Yankees are currently tied in the loss column with the Red Sox and boast the best run differential in baseball; milestones and injuries to Alex Rodriguez (who will have surgery on his knee) and Nick Swisher aside, they are heading into the All-Star break on a roll. They've won eight of their last nine series (losing only the set in Cleveland); the Yankees would have been hard pressed to finish the first half of the season in much better shape.
Discussion of the Day: Where would you rank Derek Jeter's 3000th hit among the all-time Yankees moments? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
1) Johnette Howard writes that despite their recent accomplishments, it's business as usual for the Yankees.
Indeed, a weekend that saw Jeter become just the 28th player in baseball history to get his 3,000th hit and Sabathia become the first Yankees pitcher since 1980 to throw a 1-0 complete game shut out at Yankee Stadium for the Yankees might be hard to top in terms of regular season memorability. Still, in the end what matters most for the Yankees is winning, and come the pennant race heating up in September, the two victories will be reflected as just that -- two wins -- in the standings.
2) John Rowe attempts to place Jeter's 3000th hit among the context of the all-time most memorable Yankees moments.
Such a list is no doubt subjective; whether Jeter's accomplishment is, say, more impressive than Lou Gehrig's iron man streak is certainly up for debate. What the list does, however, illustrate, is the sheer number of moments Yankees fans have to choose from: among the moments that didn't make Rowe's list are the team winning 114 games in 1998, Mickey Mantle winning the 1956 Triple Crown and Mariano Rivera's 500th career save. Certainly, though, Jeter's accomplishment will be debated in such a context for years to come.
3) Daniel Barbarisi writes that Jeter's swing and approach are largely the same as when he was a rookie.
Jeter is often hailed as a model of consistency, and it would be difficult for him to have accomplished that with a constantly changing approach. In fact, it's now quite normal to hear baseball announcers (and fans) use the term "Jeterian" to describe his inside-out swing (as well as his hallmark jump-throw when on defense), which only underscores the accomplishment it is to have maintained the same swing for 16 years.
4) The minor league day was highlighted by the Futures Game.
Triple-A Scranton lost to Rochester, 3-1.
Andrew Brackman pitched two innings in relief, allowing just one hit and no runs. He walked one and didn't strike out a batter.
For Tampa, J.R. Murphy was hitless in his lone at bat (a pinch-hit appearance).
Gary Sanchez was hitless in three at bats in the first game and did not play in the second.
Short Season Staten Island lost to Vermont, 8-2, while the Rookie GCL Yankees had a scheduled off day.