Well, here we are in Game 2 with the Yankees taking on the Tigers trailing 1-0 in the series. Although it's only the second game, it really feels that the Yankees need to take this one with Cy Verlander going in Game 3 against #4 starter Phil Hughes in Detroit. Yes, Hughes had a complete game victory over Verlander at Comerica Park earlier in the season, but it's still not an optimistic scenario for the Yanks, especially if they're trailing 2-0 at that point. It would also be good to win their first game without the injured Derek Jeter, if not only to show that they can do it.
As we prepare to start the game, I have learned that according to TBS, Game 2 starter Hiroki Kuroda is actually named Hideki. Fun fact! On a more interesting note, Alex Rodriguez took Jeter's place leading the team onto the field. It doesn't mean much, but it's cool to see.
Kuroda struck out Austin Jackson to begin the game! He's going on three days' rest, but he apparently did not think twice about taking this start, which is great. I remember hearing that Chien-Ming Wang was hesitant about taking his Game 4 start in the 2007 ALDS against the Cleveland Indians, and had initially assumed that the start was going to Mike Mussina (it probably should have gone to Moose in hindsight). Wang took the start when Mussina assured him the start was his, but he had nothing and the Yankees lost the series. Kuroda got Quintin Berry on a fly ball, then struck out Triple Crowner Miguel Cabrera to end the inning. Nice start, #HIROK looks sharp.
Trade acquisition Anibal Sanchez takes the mound for Detroit. I remember Sanchez most for breaking that bizarre no-hit drought that lasted from Randy Johnson's perfect game in May 2004 until Sanchez threw a no-no with the Marlins in September 2006. It's crazy to think that the drought even happened considered the incredible number of no-hitters and perfect games that baseball has seen since 2009. Sanchez gets Ichiro and Cano out on ground balls to begin the game, bringing up Mark Teixeira. Tex jumps out to a 3-0 advantage in the count, benefitting from a generous ball three call. Sanchez recovers to get the count full, but Tex smacks one down the right field line for a double! Tex, Ichiro, and Martin have been three starters that haven't been otherworldly like Jeter and Ibanez, but have all been consistent anyway. It's unsurprising that Joe Girardi's trying to keep them together.
Ibanez passes the baton by taking a five-pitch walk, bringing up Martin with runners on first and second. A-Rod is on deck, it will be interesting to see if he comes up with runners on. Sanchez renders the point moot by backhanding a comebacker, throwing Martin out at first. That's just how it's been for the Yankees offense these days--crap luck.
Let's hope for more luck in the second.