Chief Tames Tribe As Yankees Pound Out 18 Hits

GAME 63

YANKEES 9, INDIANS 1

A game of contrasts was on display at Yankee Stadium on Sunday.

The grizzled veterans of the Yankees, led by starting pitcher Freddy Garcia, was calmly efficient in its pitching, hitting and defense. The Central Division-leading Indians, however, are a young team prone to mistakes in pitching and defense and struggling to put together an offense.

The net result was a third straight beating by New York over Cleveland. The combined scores of the three games is:Yankees 24, Indians 8.

Garcia (5-5) led the way by limiting the Indians to just one run on seven hits and two walks and he struck out six in 6 2/3 innings of work. The Indians were 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position against Garcia and 0-for-12 overall.

Meanwhile, the Yankees gave Garcia more than enough support with a season-high 18 hits, led by Curtis Granderson, who was 4-for-4 with two RBIs, Brett Gardner, who was 3-for-4 with two doubles, a triple and three runs scored and Alex Rodriguez, who was 3-for-5 with a double and three RBIs.

Indians starter Mitch Talbot (7-4) was chased after five innings in which he gave up six runs on a career-high 12 hits and one walk and he fanned two batters. He also was let down by his defense during a five-run fifth inning, in which outfielders Shin-Soo Choo and Auston Kearns misjudged fly balls.

With the victory the Yankees are back at a season-high nine games over .500 with a 36-27 record. They remain two games in  back of first-place Boston in the American League East. The Indians have now lost 14 of their last 18 games and they are 34-29.

PINSTRIPE POSITIVES

  • Garcia bounced back from a poor showing in his last start against Boston to pitch a shutout for six innings. The Indians scored their only run on a Kearns leadoff double in the seventh. He advanced to third on a groundout and scored on a groundout by Michael Brantley. Garcia evened his season record and lowered his season ERA to 3.60.
  • Derek Jeter was 2-for-5, scored a run and drove in a pair. His two hits give him 2,993 for his career, just seven hits shy of the 3,000-hit plateau. Jeter has four games remaining on the homestand to reach the mark.
  • Granderson continues to blister the ball. Despite the fact Jose Bautista wrested the major-league home run lead away from him on Sunday, Granderson was perfcet at the plate with a double, three singles, a sac fly, two runs scored and two RBIs. Granderson raised his season batting average to .279.
  • After being thrown out twice on the bases on Saturday, Gardner used his speed to maximum effect by igniting three innings in which the Yankees scored. He doubled to lead off the third and later scored on Granderson’s sac fly. He doubled to lead off the fifth and scored on a Jeter RBI single. And in the eighth, he led off with a triple and scored on a Jeter RBI single.

NAGGING NEGATIVES

  • Russell Martin, returning to the starting lineup after a four-game absence due to back stiffness, probably wished he waited another day to come back. Martin was 0-for-4 including a strikeout and hitting into a pair of double plays. Martin bounced into a double play in the fifth inning with the bases loaded and one out. The Indians also stole five bases on him, though most of them were off the slow deliveries of Garcia.
  • Mark Teixeira also was 0-for-4 with a walk in the game. That lowered Teixeira’s season average to .252.
  • Rodriguez committed a throwing error on what would have been an inning-ending forceout off the bat of Carlos Santana in the seventh inning. Rodriguez’s throw drew Robinson Cano off second base and loaded the bases. Fortunately for Rodriguez, reliever Boone Logan retired Choo on a soft liner to Jeter.

BOMBER BANTER

The Yankees placed starting pitcher Bartolo Colon on the 15-day disabled list on Sunday with strained left hamstring. In addition, the Yankees placed reliever Amauri Sanit on the DL with a right elbow injury. The Yankees recalled right-hander Hector Noesi and outfielder Chris Dickerson from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to replace Colon and Sanit. Colon said he hopes to be back when he is eligible to be removed from the DL on June 27. The 38-year-old right-hander injured his hamstring in the seventh inning covering first base on a grounder by Choo. Noesi is likely to replace Colon as a starter on Thursday in Arlington, TX, where the Yankees will face the Rangers.

ON DECK

The Yankees have already won the four-game series against the Indians and they will go for the sweep on Monday.

A.J. Burnett (6-4, 4.37 ERA) will start for the Yankees. The result of his last start against the Red Sox is classified. Burnett is 3-4 with a 4.37 ERA in his career against the Indians.

The Indians will counter with right-hander Carlos Carrasco (5-3, 4.52 ERA), who is coming off 8 1/3 innings of shutout baseball against the Twins on Tuesday. He gave up three hits, a walk and fanned six. He has never faced the Yankees.

Game-time will be 7:05 p.m. EDT and the game will be telecast nationally by ESPN and locally by the YES Network.

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