A terrific night from A.J. Burnett and another big hit by Hideki Matsui off Pedro Martinez gives the Yankees a 3-1 win and a split of the two games against the Phillies in New York. Back with more from the clubhouse soon.
UPDATE, 12:09 a.m.: Initially, the bench told Derek Jeter to bunt in the seventh, “but I would have done it anyway,” he said. With two strikes, though, Jeter made the decision to attempt another bunt. “That was me,” he said. “I was stupid.”
UPDATE, 12:11 a.m.: Here’s the audio from Girardi, who talks quite a bit about Burnett, Matsui and Teixeira. He also said that Jeter’s decision to bunt with two strikes was “on his own” but that “if he feels he can get the job done, I’m not going to bark at him.”
As for A-Rod, Girardi said, “I know he’ll bounce back. Obviously you want him to continue on the torrid pace he’s been on but I know he’ll bounce back.”
Also, here’s Burnett’s interview. He sat at the table with his sons on either side of him and said this was the most fun “I’ve ever had on a baseball field. ”
UPDATE, 12:47 p.m.: Have to give credit where it’s due. Pedro Martinez pitched well tonight, but the Yankees got to him. Mark Teixeira had been awful at the plate this postseason, but his home run tied the game in the fourth. Hideki Matsui had two hits in his past 15 at-bats but went 2-for-2 with a go-ahead home run off Martinez. Jerry Hairston Jr. had two at-bats this postseason, but his seventh-inning single opened the rally that chased Martinez from the game.
“Location, spotting everything down, right at the knees,” Hairston said. “He doesn’t throw 97, 98 any more but his location is excellent. His location might be a little bit better. I went back and looked at film. Perfect pitches inner half. Perfect down at the knees. Balls you really don’t want to hit.”
UPDATE, 12:52 p.m.: Girardi on whether Marianio Rivera will be available Saturday after throwing 40 pitches tonight. “Well, I would think so. I won’t know that until Saturday, I’ll check with him Saturday, but I think he threw 34 pitches against the Angles and he would have been available with a day off if we had to play again, or he probably would have been available the next day. So, I think he’ll be fine.”
UPDATE, 1:08 a.m.: Josh here with audio from Teixeira, who snapped a 25-inning streak at home for the Yankees in World Series play without scoring an earned run. He also delivered his third big hit of the playoffs. They’ve been few and far between for Tex, but this was another important one. He said it meant more because he hit it in victory.
I also wanted to post the postgame chat with Pedro, who, among other things, said: 1) Yankee fans want to root for him, deep-down; 2) If he played here, he’d be a king at Yankee Stadium; and 3) He thought a man sitting in the front row, holding his daughter in one hand and a beer in the other was disgusting. He’s a father, after all, he said.
I also crammed into the scrum for Alex Rodriguez, who dropped to 0 for 8 with six strikeouts this World Series. He remained confident he will turn his fortunes around. “It’s just eight at-bats,” Rodriguez said. “I’m not concerned at all.”