Two numbers that standout after tonight’s game: Seven and Zero.
Seven different Yankees had a hit. Nick Swisher was the only one with two. A lineup that hasn’t been especially good this postseason scored its second most runs of the playoffs, and scored them on night when the Yankees fell in an early hole and needed to put some runs on the board. It started with Alex Rodriguez’s replay home run, included Andy Pettitte’s first postseason RBI and finished with Hideki Matsui coming off the bench for a pinch hit homer.
“It’s always good when more guys contribute,” Johnny Damon said. “But Alex really got us going with that home run.”
Zero Phillies left-handers — other than Cole Hamels of all people — had a hit. Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez combined to go 0-for-12 with seven strikeouts. Against Pettitte they were 0-for-9 with six strikeouts. On a night he didn’t have his best stuff, Pettitte was able to lock in against the best hitters in the Philadelphia lineup. Pettitte actually said he was fortunate to have those lefties in the lineup because he could after them with cutters.
“I can’t remember winning a game, I may have, but I can’t remember winning a game where I’ve struggled like I did tonight,” Pettitte said. “It’s very gratifying to be able to go out there and just battle through it. Really that’s all. I knew where I was when the game started. I knew after the first inning, even though I got through that first, the ball wasn’t going where I wanted it to exactly, and usually lately it has been. So it’s just going back to the dugout, talking to Dave and the guys and just trying to take it slow, take one pitch at a time and realizing it’s a long game, and hopefully that our offense could get clicking and get going.
“And we got going tonight, and that was a good thing to see.”
UPDATE: Here’s the Pettitte audio. It’s all good stuff, with a nice payoff at the end when he talks about Derek Jeter nearly catching him on the bases. This one comes highly recommended.