Can’t Win ‘Em All: Bombers fall to Halos despite four more homers


Usually when a team hits four home runs, they put themselves in a very good position to be victorious. The Yankees, the major league leaders in home runs, did exactly that raising their grand total to 142 long balls for the season. Unfortunately their opponents, the Los Angeles Angels, also hit four bombs and held on for a 10-8 win over the Bombers.

Once again an anticipated matchup of top starters in the American League failed to live up to expectations. Ivan Nova (10-4) was flawed yesterday in allowing six runs on nine hits and two walks. He struck out three but also gave up three home runs. He has now allowed 20 homers on the season, which is the most of any pitcher on the team.

Nova’s counterpart Jered Weaver was not much more impressive. He had a hard time maintaining consistency. He tossed 26 pitches in the first inning and then had innings in which he threw less than 10. The gopher ball was an issue for Weaver as well. He gave up three on the day after having only given up five in 96 2/3 innings coming into the start. But, he was one run better than Nova and picked up his 11th win of the season against only one loss.

He was fortunate to be on the winning side of the margin considering his performance and he can thank Kevin Jepsen for putting the finishing touches on the game which the Yankees almost rallied to win.

After the Angels had scored three runs in the eighth and one in the top of the ninth, the Yankees found themselves down 10-5. They were able to stage a rally strong enough to have the winning run on first base and it started against one of the most dominant relievers in the game this season, Ernesto Frieri. Robinson Cano, who extended his hit streak to 18 earlier in the game, walked to open the frame. Mark Teixeira was next and launched a two-run shot into the second deck in right field. The runs charged to Frieri were his first in an Angels’ uniform. He had gone 26 1/3 innings without allowing a run since he arrived in a trade from the San Diego Padres.

Frieri walked Nick Swisher and was replaced by Scott Downs. Raul Ibanez singled moving Swisher to second. Andruw Jones struck out as a pinch-hitter and Russell Martin grounded into a force out. Derek Jeter walked and Curtis Granderson, who homered earlier in the game, had a great plate appearance and walked, scoring Swisher.

With the Yankees down by just two and the bases juiced, Alex Rodriguez stepped to the batter’s box to face Jepsen, who replaced Downs. Rodriguez had homered off Weaver in the first inning and also singled in four at-bats to that point. The Yankees, who lead the majors with 29 come-from-behind wins, would fall short Jepsen got Rodriguez to pop out to end the game.

The Yankees (54-34) stay eight games ahead of the Baltimore Orioles in the American League East. The Angels (49-40) remain five games back of the Texas Rangers in the AL West.

Tonight the Yankees will take on AL East opponent Toronto Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium. Phil Hughes (9-7, 4.33 ERA) will face Henderson Alvarez (5-7, 4.36 ERA) in the series opener.