Colon earns 'W', snaps 3-game skid
July, 24, 2011
By Ian Begley | ESPNNewYork.com
Colon (7-6, 3.29 ERA) said he went away from his two-seam fastball on Sunday, going to a four-seamer and highly-effective slider to strike out four Oakland hitters.
He also was the beneficiary of two double-plays and a run-saving play at the plate in the fifth on a great catch-and-tag by catcher Russell Martin.
Robinson Cano's relay throw to the plate was a little high, but Martin reached up to grab it and tagged Oakland's Eric Sogard before he touched the plate for the third out of the top of the fifth inning. Sogard was attempting to score from first on Hideki Matsui's double. Had he scored, it would have tied the game at 3-3.
Colon seized the momentum and allowed just one hitter to reach base (on an error) in his final two frames before giving the ball to David Robertson in the eighth.
Sunday was also Colon's first win after the All-Star Break since 2005 and his first July 2 at Citi Field.
With the trade deadline approaching, Colon was asked about the current Yankee rotation's ability to carry the team to the playoffs. He believes that the current cast of characters - - CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, himself, Phil Hughes and Freddy Garcia -- can get the job done.
"Everybody feels good now coming behind CC," he said through a translator.
JONESIN': Andruw Jones has had just 23 at-bats since the All-Star Break. But the backup outfielder isn't upset about it. He knows his role is to face left-handers in a part-time capacity.
"I know when I'm going to play and I know when I'm in the lineup so I just have to be prepared for it," Jones said.
And Jones made the most of his opportunity Sunday against A's lefty Gio Gonzalez, going 2-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored.
He drove in Martin with a single in the second and drove in Mark Teixeira with a fifth-inning single, chasing Gonzalez (9-7, 2.67 ERA) from the game.
"I know it's tough but you just can't make excuses," Jones (.218, 19 RBI) said of his part-time role. "I think that's why they brought you here. When you sign a contract, you know what you're jobs gonna be. So you just have to go out there and produce."
The Yankees reportedly signed 2010 contributor Marcus Thames to a minor-league deal earlier this week. If Thames gets called up, it would likely be to replace Jones.
CATCHING ON: Martin stole his eighth base of the season in the second, setting up one of Jones' RBI. He leads all major league catchers with eight steals …. Eduardo Nunez had a two-run double in the fourth. Twelve of his 22 RBI have tied the game or given the Yanks the lead.