A few notes for you:
Alfredo Aceves, Brian Bruney, Phil Coke and Phil Hughes were not available tonight, which is why they didn’t make a move and why Jon Albaladejo and Dave Robertson finished the game. Now that the bullpen is rested up, the move could come tomorrow.
A.J. Burnett left the Yankees needing to get only two innings out of the bullpen. He is 6-1, 1.67 in his last eight starts.
Johnny Damon was asked whether Burnett looks like the pitcher the Yankees faced last season when he was with Toronto.
“Absolutely,” he said. “He’s one of those guys you dream about at night, you know? Not in a good way, in a bad way.”
That drew big laughs from a crowd of reporters — and Nick Swisher a locker away.
“I don’t dream about A.J.,” he said. “Trust me.”
Burnett got nine of his last 12 outs on the ground. After throwing 60 pitches in the first three innings, he worked in a two-seam fastball to conserve pitches. It worked as he needed only 54 pitches over the last four innings. On a night when he didn’t have a good curveball, he was still dominating.
Offensively, every starter had at least one hit. There were eight extra-base hits and four home runs. The Yankees have won 10 of 11 and 23 of 29. As each day passes, they look better and better.
“If we keep playing like this, it’s going to be a really, really fun season,” Swisher said.
UPDATE, 11:54 p.m.: I’m getting a lot of e-mails about Mark Melancon’s inactivity. He hasn’t pitched since July 10. It’s circumstance, not some dark plot by Joe Girardi. There have been a lot of close games and/or a need to get other guys going. Melancon is the last guy in the bullpen and that’s how it goes sometimes.
They still think very highly of him.
Look at this way: The Yankees have won 10 of 11 and 23 of 29. If they’re biggest problem is not getting a rookie reliever enough work, that’s a good problem to have.
The Yankees are 61-38, try and enjoy it. Plenty of real problems will crop up eventually.