Six-Run Fifth Inning Helps Yankees Clubber White Sox, 12-3, In Series Finale

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Six-Run Fifth Inning Helps Yankees Clubber White Sox, 12-3, In Series Finale

Brett Gardner hit his third home run of the year to start a six-run fifth inning for the New York Yankees, who clobbered the Chicago White Sox 12-3 Thursday night at Yankee Stadium.Winning pitcher C.C. Sabathia (2-1) tossed seven quality innings, allowed just three earned runs and stuck out six for the Yankees, who salvage a split in the four-game series.

Outfielder Nick Swisher had an impressive outing going 3-for-4 with a homer, three runs and four RBI, including one in the lopsided fifth for the Yankees (14-8). Gardner finished 2-for-3 with three runs, RBI and a stolen base. Shortstop Eduard Nunez, who filled in for captain Derek Jeter, who was given a night off, also went 2-for-3 with three runs. Center fielder and leadoff hitter Curtis Granderson, second baseman Robinson Cano, third baseman Alex Rodriguez and catcher Russell Martin each collected hits and RBI.

Losing pitcher, Edwin Jackson (2-3), gave up six earned runs and was chased after four innings. Chicago catcher Ramon Castro finished the game 2-for-4, while shortstop Alexi Ramirez went 2-for-5.

On Friday, the Yankees schedule features the beginning of a three-game home series against the Toronto Blue Jays, which starts at 7:05 p.m. Ricky Romero (1-3, 3.00 ERA) will start for the Blue Jays (12-13), while Freddy Garcia (1-0, 0.69 ERA) is on the bump for New York. Saturday will matchup New York's A.J. Burnett (3-1, 3.52 ERA) against Kyle Drabek (2-0, 3.30) at 4:05 p.m. Sunday will showcase the Yankees' Ivan Nova (1-2, 5.82 ERA) against Jesse Litsch (2-1, 3.86) at 1:05 p.m.

Final - 4.28.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R
Chicago White Sox 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 0 3
New York Yankees 0 0 2 0 6 1 3 0 X 12

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Yankees 3, White Sox 1: Colon, Cano Carry Yankees

Bronx, NY (Sports Network) - Bartolo Colon pitched eight innings for another win and Robinson Cano backed his effort with a three-run homer, leading the Yankees to a 3-1 victory over the White Sox.

Colon (2-1) made just his second start in nearly two years and yielded one run on seven hits and a walk, striking out six.

White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen was ejected in between the top and bottom of the first inning for arguing with home plate umpire Todd Tichenor, who rung up Paul Konerko on strikes for the third out.

Guillen flailed his arms during the argument, jawing at Tichenor. After his ejection, Guillen posted two messages on his Twitter feed: "This one going to cost me a lot money this is [pathetic]" and "Today a tough guy show up [at] yankee stadium."

Cano gave the Yankees a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first, lining a 1-1 pitch over the right field wall. His sixth homer of the season scored Derek Jeter, who walked to lead off the inning, and Alex Rodriguez, who singled with two outs.

It was the only offense the Yankees needed.

Final - 4.27.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Chicago White Sox 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 7 0
New York Yankees 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 X 3 6 0
WP: Bartolo Colon (2 - 1)
SV: Mariano Rivera (8)
LP: Mark Buehrle (1 - 3)

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Yankees Have A Rafael Soriano Problem

The New York Yankees should not have a Rafael Soriano problem Wednesday night against the Chicago White Sox. That's because Soriano has pitched each of the last two days, and would seem unlikely to be called upon for a third straight day.

Right now that is a good thing. A very good thing. Because, make no mistake. The New York Yankees do have a Rafael Soriano problem. Maybe a very big Rafael Soriano problem.

Signed to a three-year, $35-million contract to be the Yankees' set-up man for, and eventual successor to, Mariano Rivera, Soriano has been awful thus far in 2011. Entering Tuesday night's game in the eighth inning, Soriano spit up a 2-1 lead by allowing a two-run home run to Chicago's Paul Konerko. He now has a 7.84 ERA through 11 appearances.

Kevin Kernan of the New York Post is screaming for Yankee Manager Joe Girardi to stop using Soriano in the eighth inning, at least for now. Girardi, though, plans to keep giving the ball to the 31-year-old right-hander, who was dominant a season ago when he saved a career-high 45 games for Tampa Bay.

"I still believe he's going to be very, very good for us," he said, "and he's going to play a huge role for us, he's just got off to a rough start."

Rough start? Well, I guess you can put it that way, Joe. There was Spring Training, where he pretty much demanded to set his own work schedule. He had the incident where he refused to talk to reporters after blowing a four-run lead. He has missed a few days with back issues. Most importantly, though, he has pitched horridly and often looked like he wanted to be somewhere else. I have even seen the dreaded Kyle Farnsworth comparison tossed out there. In fact, maybe I just made the comparison to Farnsworth-less.

Thing is, Girardi is probably also correct that Soriano will be very good for the Yankees -- eventually. He has to believe that and, I guess, so do I. What choice is there, really?

Soriano's history tells us that Soriano should be very good. He has had five consecutive seasons that have been very good, something few relievers can say. His last two seasons, in fact, have been elite. He pitched to a 0.802 WHIP a season ago, and allowed just 14 runs all year in 62 innings. He has allowed nine runs in 10.1 innings this season.

Is it adjusting to New York? Is it adjusting to setting up again after spending the last two seasons closing? Is it just an early-season struggle to find his rhythm?

Whatever it is, the Yankees need to hope he figures it out. Fast. Or the Yankees will end up with another Farnsworth on their hands.


White Sox 3, Yankees 2: Brent Lillibridge Saves Chicago

Memo to the New York Yankees: With the game on the line against the Chicago White Sox do not hit the ball to Brent Lillibridge. The Yankees tried that twice in the ninth inning Tuesday night and Lillibridge made back-to-back spectacular plays to give the White Sox a 3-2 victory at Yankee Stadium.

The official save will go on the record of relief pitcher Sergio Santos. In reality, though, it belongs to Lillibridge. With runners at first and second and one in the ninth inning Alex Rodriguez hit a twisting line drive toward the right-field corner. Lillibridge sprinted to the wall, stretch and caught the ball while crashing into the fence. Next, Robinson Cano hit a screaming line drive that appeared destined to be a game-winning double. Until Lillibridge, making a full dive, snagged the ball and snatched a victory away from the Yankees.

This was Chicago's second straight victory over New York. The White Sox had lost 10 of 11 games heading into this four-game series.

Possibly of more concern for the Yankees than the back-to-back losses is that it appears New York has a Rafael Soriano problem. Soriano (1-1) took the loss after surrendering a two-run eighth-inning home run to Paul Konerko and now has an earned-run average of 7.84. Signed to a three-year, $35-million contract to set up for Mariano Rivera and possibly replace him as closer when Rivera retires, Soriano has been mystifyingly ineffective so far in 2011 after saving a career-high 45 games for Tampa Bay in 2010. He entered Tuesday's game with a 2-1 lead following 6.1 terrific innings from Ivan Nova and two-thirds of an inning from reliever David Robertson.

New York's only runs came on solo home runs by Cano and Brett Gardner.

Final - 4.26.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Chicago White Sox 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 0 3 10 0
New York Yankees 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 4 0
WP: Gavin Floyd (3 - 1)
SV: Sergio Santos (2)
LP: Rafael Soriano (1 - 1)

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Yankees Vs. White Sox: Nova Needs Good Start

How much longer is the leash for struggling New York Yankees' starting pitcher Ivan Nova? The 24-year-old right-hander will lug a 1-2 record and a 7.63 ERA to the Yankee Stadium mound Tuesday night against the Chicago White Sox.

The Yankees already have Phil Hughes on the disabled list, and still don't really seem to know what is wrong with him. Veterans Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon are already in the starting rotation, though how long either of them can continue to pitch well is anybody's guess. Another veteran, Kevin Millwood, as at AAA Scranton Wilkes-Barre waiting for an opportunity. There are also several highly-touted youngsters in the farm system aiming to pitch their way to the Bronx.

Nova, 24, won't be allowed to stay in the big leagues a whole lot longer if he continues to get knocked around.

Gavin Floyd pitches Tuesday for the White Sox.

2011 - Ivan Nova 1-2 4 3 0 0 0 0 15.1 19 13 13 0 9 9 7.63 1.83


White Sox 2, Yankees 0: Chicago's Humber Pitches Best Game Of Career

Monday night's 2-0 victory by the Chicago White Sox over the New York Yankees is an example of why baseball is such a weird, wonderful game. Granted, Monday's outcome was not wonderful for the Yankees, but the unexpected nature of the way things happened adds to what makes the game great to watch.

Who would have expected former New York Met Philip Humber, a 28-year-old journeyman with a 3-3 career record over parts of six seasons to no-hit the Yankees for 6.1 innings?

Who would have expected A.J. Burnett of the Yankees to pitch his best game of the season, eight innings of three-hit, one-run baseball that lowered his ERA by nearly a run, and lose the game?

Who would have expected to see the White Sox, losers of 10 of 11, come into Yankee Stadium and defeat the American League East-leading Yankees?

Crazy stuff. It happens in baseball, though, and that is what makes it a crazy, unpredictable game.

The only run the White Sox were able to get against Burnett came in the fourth, as Chicago snapped a 23-inning scoring drought. Carlos Quentin opened the fourth with a sinking line drive to center field that Curtis Granderson dove for and missed, allowing the ball to roll behind him for a double. A pair of groundouts brought the run home, with Adam Dunn collecting the RBI by chopping a ball to shortstop.

Humber, incidentally, was drafted by the Yankees in the 29th round of the 2001 draft but did not sign. He was chosen again by the Mets in 2004.

Final - 4.25.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Chicago White Sox 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 2 5 0
New York Yankees 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
WP: Philip Humber (2 - 2)
SV: Sergio Santos (1)
LP: A.J. Burnett (3 - 1)

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Phil Hughes Shuts Down Bullpen Session, Heads To The Doctor

The New York Yankees did not get good news on young right-hander Phil Hughes Monday. Hughes, on the 15-day disabled list with what has been described as a "dead arm," shut down a bullpen session after just a few pitches and will now head to the doctor to have his right arm examined.

"It was just the same, the same as before. It just felt like nothing coming out, and I didn't bounce back off that long bullpen session like I would have liked," the right-hander said. "So that's where we're at. Just a lot of deadness after the first 10 or so ... we're just gonna take a couple days and rest it and re-evaluate it from there."

"It's not really something that I'm really worried about. I'm just trying to take every step to get it right," Hughes said. "Obviously if they think that there's something going on and they want to check it out, then I'm all for that, too. But I'm not really in a position to want anything but to be healthy."

Hughes won 18 games for the Yankees a season ago, but pitched to an ERA of 13.94 before the Yankees disabled him in hopes of rebuilding his arm strength and velocity. Now, there have to be questions about when --or if -- the Yankees might see production from Hughes this season.

With Hughes sidelined, the Yankee rotation is CC Sabathia and a collection of question marks. You can bet General Manager Brian Cashman will be working the phones to find at least one starting pitcher later on this season.

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