Yanks stung by Rays

“Big Game” James Shields shut the Yankee lineup down as the Rays moved to within a game in the division via a 3-0 win on Sunday afternoon.

The Yanks, who were shut out for the fifth time this season, mustered just five hits and struck out 11 times against “Panty Shields” (my new nickname for him). In the team’s brief history, only three Rays have fanned 10 Yankees in a game: Scott Kazmir 9/27/2007, Joe Kennedy 5/9/2002 and Shields on Sunday.

Girardi:

He got us to chase a lot of changeups today. He threw a lot of them the first two times through the order. He kept us off the base and didn’t give us many chances.

Swish Dog:

I think the biggest thing about it is that they weren’t really for strikes, we were chasing them. Next time we get him in a situation like that we’ll make sure they’re strikes.

CC was denied his bid for win #150 and was 11-0 with a 1.92 ERA over his previous 13 August starts coming in. In fact, he lost his first game in the month of August since 2007.

CC:

They’re a good team, they got a great lineup. Pitching’s been great for them. We got a good team here too, we just need to keep playing and keep trying to win ballgames.

Girardi made some baffling moves with the lineup, as he had Berkman (who went 1-for-4 and made a few gaffes in the field) at first base with Tex as the DH, Pena (who made some solid plays in the field but went hitless) at third with A-Rod getting the day off, and Kearns (0-for-2) in left with Gardy getting some rest. Those choices were perplexing — because A-Rod and Gardy both eventually came into the game — seeing as how it was a division game with a team just two games back. Granted it’s only August 1, but come on Joe.

Swish Dog, who had two of the five hits:

It’s definitely a good battle, there’s no doubt; two great teams going up against each other. It was a fun game to play in because everybody’s giving it their best efforts. They got our number this time and we gotta go back and get ready for our next series.

There were some positives. The 33-year-old clean-shaven Kerry Wood, who has been on the DL 14 times in his career, tossed an inning of scoreless relief and looked like he still had some life left in him. Plus, Jeter tied Harold Baines for 41st on the all-time hit list with his 2,866th base knock. That really doesn’t mean much in a loss, but it’s something. Finally, the Yanks are 66-38 with a one-game lead after 104 games, at the same point last year they were 62-42 with a half-game lead. So step back from the ledge.

The Yanks will send AJ to the mound against Brandon Morrow tomorrow in the opener of a three-game set at home against the Blue Jays. Whereas the Rays will host the Twinkies…who have the rejuvenated Carl Pavano pitching. It is going to be tough rooting for that sunuvabitch.

LET’S GO YANKS!!!!!

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Tags: Aj Burnett Austin Kearns Brett Gardner CC Sabathia Joe Girardi Kerry Wood Lance Berkman Mark Teixeira Nick Swisher

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