WHAT IT MEANS: After back-to-back starts from Good A.J., Bad A.J. reared his ugly head yet again.
A.J. Burnett was charged with four runs on seven hits in 6 1/3 innings and walked a season-high five batters in the Yankees’ 4-2 loss to Colorado on Friday night at Yankee Stadium.
Burnett, who fell to 7-6, had allowed just three runs in his previous two outings, but couldn’t find the strike zone against Colorado. At one point, he’d thrown 33 balls and 26 strikes. The Yankees, who are now at 12 games over .500 (43-31), are 7-9 this season with Burnett on the mound. They are also 23-27 in night games, as compared to an MLB-best 20-4 in games played during the day.
One future trivia item on the enigmatic 34-year-old right-hander: He struck out four batters in the sixth -- tying a major league record -- to become the first Yankee in franchise history to accomplish the feat. Mariners phenom Felix Hernandez was the last to do it, in 2010.
Burnett also K'd four in one inning with Florida on July 5, 2002 against the Mets. He struck out Mike Piazza, Mo Vaughn, Timo Perez and Jay Payton.
A-ROD: Alex Rodriguez lashed an RBI double into left in the first inning, then added a sacrifice fly in the third.
DOWNRIGHT OFFENSIVE: The Yankees' prolific offense was neutralized by Ubaldo Jimenez, mustering just four hits and two over seven innings. They finished Friday night's game by going 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position and stranding six. The top five hitters in the Yankees' lineup went a combined 1-for-15.
GIAMBINO: Jason Giambi, returning to the Bronx for the first time since 2009, absolutely crushed a mammoth solo home run off Burnett in the second. The ball landed with the Bleacher Creatures, who acknowledged Giambi during their pregame roll call, in deep right field. Giambi finished with three hits before being replaced by a pinch-runner in the ninth.
TULO: There was only one No. 2 manning shortstop on Friday night -- and his name was Troy Tulowitzki. Tulowizki, who idolized Derek Jeter growing up, hit a Jeterian-like opposite-field homer in the fifth off Burnett.
UP NEXT: CC Sabathia (9-4, 3.39 ERA) opposes Aaron Cook (0-2, 4.67) on Saturday afternoon.