Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Notebook: Ichiro's homer Ichiro Suzuki took care of two milestones with one swing.
Suzuki blasted the 100th homer of his career, and his first as a Yankee, in the seventh inning of Monday's night 5-4 loss to the Orioles. The right fielder's homer also marked his first RBI with the team, and he's hit safely in all seven games with the Yankees.
"That was very special to go out there and have the fans react the way they did," Suzuki said through a translator about the experience. "That was very special."
With the Yankees trailing 5-3, Suzuki sent Baltimore starter Miguel Gonzalez to the showers by smoking a ball to right field. The fans cheered loudly for Suzuki, who has been serenaded with cheers and the chanting of his name at Yankee Stadium since his arrival.
While hitting the century mark for homers is a nice accomplishment, the outfielder wasn't too excited. Being that it's his 12th season in Major League Baseball, he said he didn't want to make a big deal out of it. His home run snapped an 188 at-bat homerless streak.
As tempting as the short porch in right might be for lefties like Suzuki, he doesn't want to become too enticed by trying to jack homers out of his new park.
"There's a risk in that for me," Suzuki said. "You're not able to play the way you normally do. Obviously, there's going to be times when I try, but I'm going to continue to play and be in the best position for me to do well. We have a lot of guys on this team that can hit home runs."
FREDDY ESCAPES:Freddy Garcia lived dangerously Monday night, serving up nine hits in six innings, but the veteran managed to give up just three runs in what was ultimately a losing effort. Garcia benefited from three double plays.
Garcia gave up a solo homer, and the Orioles plated the other runs on sacrifice flies. While he's pitched better since rejoining the rotation in July, Garcia has lost three straight starts.
"I got lucky today. Three double plays. My best friend today," Garcia said. "I give up three. Home run there, he didn't really hit that ball, we play here, it happens. We fell short today. We needed a hit that last inning but we weren't able to do that. We just got to continue to play the way we've been playing and that's part of the game, you lose and you win."
NOTES: Robinson Cano is in his longest hitless streak of the year, 0-for-14. ... The Yankees have homered in 18 straight games. ... Eric Chavez had been 2-for-26 before recording two hits, including a home run that cut Baltimore's lead to 5-3 in the seventh.