Mark Teixeira’s third-inning grand slam provided all the cushion the Yankees needed in today’s 4-0 win. It was the fifth of his career and his first in pinstripes (or Yankee road grays) — just not his first in the Bronx. He burned Edwar Ramirez for a grand slam as a member of the Angels on Aug. 3, 2008.
The Yankees lead the bigs with seven grand slams (Alex Rodriguez, 2; Jorge Posada, 2; Teixeira; Curtis Granderson; Robinson Cano) after belting three this homestand alone. But check out these stats: the club is batting .420 with 37 hits and 103 RBI with the bags juiced this season.
The production already dwarfs last season when the team hit just three slams all year. Even the club record is in jeopardy this season; it sits at 10, which was accomplished in 1987 (thank Don Mattingly for that).
The man who provided today’s grand slam, Teixeira, hopes the big home runs he hit the last two days are the sign his struggles are over.
“It’s a daily grind. It’s never easy. You’re always working, especially both ways,” Teixeira said. “It’s tough for me sometimes. But when I can hit a home run left-handed yesterday, a home run right-handed today, hopefully that’ll get some things rolling for me personally.”
• Alex Rodriguez was replaced by Ramiro Pena at third base following the rain delay, but it was only for precautionary reasons. “I felt really good,” Rodriguez said. “I think we had a little bit of a delay and Joe just felt like it was a good idea.”
Despite his manager’s caution, Rodriguez plans to play every game this week. “In a perfect world, I hope to get to play all six,” he said. “Right now, that’s the plan.”
• Today was the club’s 9,500th victory since its inception in 1903. The Yankees are 9,500-7,167 overall and are one of two teams with more than 9,000 wins in that span, joined only by the Giants (9,008).
• The Yankees are now 9-3 all-time in rubber games against the Mets, and a meaty 8-0 all-time in the Bronx.
• Those of you who noted Francisco Cervelli’s penchant for triples? You were on to something. Today Cervelli hit his third of the season. It is the most by a Yankee catcher since Joe Girardi hit four in 1998.
• Batters are now 0-for-their-last-22 against Mariano Rivera. Righties are in an 0-for-20 skid.
• As I mentioned on Twitter, the Mets optioned Jenrry Mejia to the minors after the game. The 20-year old was the youngest pitcher in baseball but had been used sparingly, pitching just four times since back-to-back appearances on June 5 and 6.
Mejia has not been charged with a run in 23 of his 30 outings, but the club believes he must work in the minors to further his development. He will head to Class AA Binghamton (partially at his request; “Triple-A is too cold,” Mejia told us) and start on Wednesday. The Mets have not announced a corresponding roster move, but will likely promote reliever Bobby Parnell from Buffalo.
Mejia understood the decision, and could even be described as excited. “I’m happy that I”m going to be a starter again,” Mejia said. “I want to be a starter in the major leagues. I’m going down, I’m going to continue to work hard. I don’t have to put my head down. I’d have to work hard anyway.