WHAT IT MEANS: The New York Yankees can actually get a hit when it matters. After three series, they now sit at 5-4 after taking two of three from the Los Angeles Angels.
FAILED RISP? RIP: The Yankees had struggled big time with RISP, but they got it going under the lights on Sunday night. Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira and Nick Swisher all came through with runners in scoring position. Swisher's was a sacrifice fly.
Derek Jeter broke the game open in the fourth with his first RISP hit (0-for-9 previously), a three-run homer. Raul Ibanez went yard in the seventh. It was a two-run shot. The Yankees entered batting .200 with RISP.
New York Yankees
WHITEY FORD, NICE TO MEET YOU: The Angels were all or nothing against Ivan Nova in the first two innings. Nova struck out three Angels among his six outs.
Between the K's, though, Howie Kendrick just missed a homer in the first. Nova stranded Kendrick after his one-out triple.
In the second, Vernon Wells just missed a homer leading off. An out later, Mark Trumbo finally put one over the fence. After two straight hits, Nova again escaped more runs being scored by inducing Erick Aybar into a fielder's choice. So he was only down 1-0 even after allowing four hits -- and three very hard hit balls -- in the first two innings.
In the third, Nova settled down, striking out the side, including Albert Pujols.
Still, overall, the Angels hit Nova hard a lot of the night -- Chris Ianetta had a two-run homer in the fifth -- but Nova did a good enough job of spreading out their eight hits over his six innings to win.
He struck out eight and walked just two. He won his 14th consecutive decision, tying Whitey Ford for second on the all-time list. Roger Clemens owns the record at 16 games.
COMING ATTRACTIONS: I'm writing a column about how, with stars in the house, one man reigned supreme. Guess who it is?
Matt Ehalt will have postgame blogs and will deliver Monday morning's First pitch at 7 a.m. ET.
WHAT'S NEXT: The Twins come to the Stadium for four games before next weekend's showdown with the Red Sox at Fenway. On Monday, Freddy Garcia (0-0, 5.79) faces Carl Pavano (0-1, 5.93 ERA). Tuesday it is CC Sabathia (0-0, 6.75) vs. Francisco Lirano (0-1, 10.00). Wednesday, Hiroki Kuroda (1-1, 2.63) vs. Jason Marquis (8-6, 4.43). On Friday, the Yankees are in Boston to renew the rivalry.
AND HE WAS HERE: Tebow!!
QUESTION OF THE NIGHT: With the Twins coming in, do you think the Yankees are about to get on a roll?