Not a good beginning for the Yankees, who lose 6-1. Back with the clubhouse report soon.
UPDATE, 12:11 a.m.: Pitching coach Dave Eiland just said that Cliff Lee’s performance was “probably the best pitching performance we’ve seen against us all season” and Mark Teixeira said he “wouldn’t disagree with that.”
Eiland also said that the 113 pitches CC Sabathia threw wasn’t too much to rule him out of a start on three days rest in Game 4, though Eiland was quick to add that didn’t mean the Yankees were going to choose to do that.
UPDATE, 12:15 a.m.: Johnny Damon said “the ball was definitely getting in on us” from Lee. “We wasted a great performance by CC, that’s the bottom line,” Damon added.
By the way, both Damon and Jorge Posada said they didn’t think that Lee was showing up the Yankees at all with his side-saddle catch of Damon’s pop-up and tag-on-the-rear of Posada. Damon said he thought Lee was debating whether to let the pop-up drop, but caught it when he saw that Damon was running hard out of the box.
UPDATE, 12:18 a.m.: Some debate in the clubhouse about what was Lee’s best pitch tonight. Some guys seemed to think cutter, some thought changeup, others said curveball. Bottom line, he mixed pitches and got ahead in the count. “CC did exactly what we needed him to do,” Derek Jeter said. “We just didn’t score runs.”
UPDATE, 12:41 a.m.: On the first home run to Utley, Sabathia was trying to throw a fastball down and away. It ended up over the middle of the plate. On the second home run, Sabathia was trying to go up and in — Posada had called for a cutter away, but Sabathia wanted to stay inside — and he again left the ball over the middle of the plate. Two pitches did all the damage against him, but Sabathia wasn’t impressed.
“Everybody is saying it was only two pitches,” he said. “But I was behind to almost everybody.”
UPDATE, 12:47 a.m.: This will shock everyone. Girardi would not say who’s starting at catcher tomorrow. “We’ll talk about it, I’ll sleep on it, and we’ll have a lineup when I get here tomorrow.”
UPDATE, 1:02 a.m.: Josh here with audio from the clubhouse.
Here’s Girardi, who was a bit shorter than normal:
Posada talked about Sabathia, Cliff Lee and the bullpen:
And, finally, Sabathia was very critical about his outing. He demanded more than the three walks, even if it appeared the two mistakes to Utley were what cost him. He also expressed his willingness to pitch Game 4 on short rest:
As I said on Twitter, Phil Hughes ducked the media after walking two to lead off the eighth. Dave Eiland said Hughes tried to be “too perfect,” but expressed confidence the team will continue to utilize him in the same role. “Sure, why not,” Eiland said. “He’s had a heckuva lot more good outings than bad. We’re not going to throw the towel on him yet.”