Rapid Reaction: Yankees 5, Blue Jays 3
April, 25, 2013
By Andrew Marchand | ESPNNewYork.com
WHAT IT MEANS: The more things change, the more they stay the same -- at least, so far. The Blue Jays were supposed to turn the AL East upside down. In Toronto last week, the Yankees took two of three. Now, in the first game of this four-gamer, the Yankees get on the board first with a 5-3 win.
MVP?: Robinson Cano is making a strong early case for the award. With the Yankees down two runs in the third, Cano came up with two men on. In his career, Cano had owned Mark Buehrle, picking up seven hits in 17 at-bats, including two homers.
Cano worked the count to 3-1 before sending a rocket into the right-field seats. It was his seventh of the year and gave the Yankees a 4-3 lead. It also might help some of us look smart by the end of the year.
WELLS DONE: Entering Thursday, Vernon Wells had been great on the road, but only OK at home. Coming in, he was 7-for-34 (.206) with two homers in the Bronx.
I asked him about it in the pregame and he didn't think there was anything to it. Well, in the second, he nailed a solo shot. It was his sixth homer of the season so maybe he was right. Any way you slice it, Wells has been a tremendous pickup so far.
THAT'S CERVELLI: Francisco Cervelli nailed a solo shot in the fourth. It was his third of the year. Cervelli has hit eight career home runs; the Yankees are 7-1 in those games.
ROUGH START: The Blue Jays were so on Hiroki Kuroda early, you wondered if they were stealing signs. In the first two innings, the Jays mashed Kuroda for three runs on six hits, including a two-run homer from Edwin Encarnacion and a solo shot from Brett Lawrie. Kuroda did not look like himself.
SMOOTH SAILING: We have seen this act before from the veteran Kuroda. He starts off slow and then it is like he turns a switch and becomes unhittable. On Thursday, in his final four innings, the Jays didn't have a hit. Kuroda continues to be a gem for the Yankees. His final line was six innings, three runs on six hits. He struck out three and walked two. He improved to 3-1.
YOU DON'T SEE THAT OFTEN: In the seventh, Ben Francisco tried to bunt for a base hit. Initially, first base ump Chad Fairchild called Francisco out, but, even without Joe Girardi emerging from the dugout, the umps discussed it and apparently decided Encarnacion, playing first, trapped the ball. Besides that, Francisco might have beaten the throw. Anyway, they overturned the call.
Blue Jays manager John Gibbons went berserk and was thrown out for the second consecutive game.
ICHIRO HITS: Ichiro Suzuki went 2-for-4 to lift his average to .239. He also stole a base. Ichiro has to play well if he is going to keep his playing time with Wells hitting so well and Curtis Granderson's return around the corner.
JETER VOWS: The big pregame news was that Derek Jeter said there is no doubt he will return this season. The bigger immediate news from the left side of the infield might be that Kevin Youkilis is still out.
ANNOUNCED ATTENDANCE: 31,445.
QUESTION OF THE NIGHT: What do you think of Kuroda's ability to go from bad to good so easily?