What started out as a road victory last Friday in Baltimore for CC Sabathia ended as another road victory with another great victory. The Yankees won behind CC, Mariano Rivera, and some clutch plays, defeating the Blue Jays, 3-2.  In eight innings the big lefty allowed two runs on five hits, walked four, and struck out five. He threw 111 pitches, 65 for strikes.

The first run he allowed came on a solo homer off the bat of Alex Rios in the fourth. Toronto scored their second run in the fifth; Scott Rolen led off with a walk, two batters later Rod Barajas drove him in with an RBI double.

The Blue Jays may have had three runs if it had not been for a great defensive play by Brett Gardner and Francisco Cervelli. After the Barajas double, John McDonald lined a single up the middle. Gardner fielded and fired the ball into Cervelli just up the third base line, Cervelli caught the ball and made a great lunging tag just getting Barajas on the back for the out. Awesome!

CC got into a bases-loaded jam in the seventh. Rolen led off with a double, and then moved to third on a sac fly. The Yanks then intentionally walked Baras to setup the double play. In what might have been the biggest at-bat of the game, CC struck out McDonald for the second out of the inning. CC then walked Marco Scutaro to load the bases for one of the hottest hitters in the league, Aaron Hill. Hill grounded a 0-1 changeup to A-Rod who threw to second for the force and the final out of the inning.

The offense started off the right way tonight, scoring a run in their first at-bat. Johnny Damon doubled with one out. It was the tenth game in a row with an extra base hit for Damon, trying a franchise record that had been held by by Paul O’Neill in 2001 and Don Mattingly in 1987.

Jays starter Brian Tallet then walked Mark Teixeira, got Alex Rodriguez to fly out, but then walked both Hideki Matsui and then Nick Swisher with the bases loaded and the Yanks led 1-0.

After cruising for the next five innings Tallet got into some trouble in the seventh. Gardner walked and then Cervelli hit a single with Gardner running to put runners on first and third with nobody out. Derek Jeter then tied the game when he fought off an inside pitch, dunking it over second base for an RBI single.

Hideki Matsui would give the Yankees the lead for good with a solo homer to lead off the top of the eight off Jays reliever Jesse Carlson.

Mariano Rivera came on for the save and needed just eleven pitches to retire the Jays in order. Mo made quick work of the Jays for his seventh save of the year.

The Yanks are now 17-17 and head home for a ten-game homestand against the Twins, Orioles, and Phillies. Phil Hughes looks to rebound after two rough starts against the Red Sox and Orioles when he takes the mound in tomorrow’s season opener against the Twins.

Jeter, SS 5 0 1 1 0 1 2 .270
Damon, LF 5 1 1 0 0 2 2 .318
Teixeira, 1B 4 0 1 0 1 1 2 .203
Rodriguez, A, 3B 5 0 0 0 0 0 5 .143
Matsui, DH 3 1 1 1 1 0 1 .265
Swisher, RF 2 0 0 1 2 0 0 .248
Cabrera, M, RF 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .326
Cano, 2B 4 0 1 0 0 1 4 .315
Gardner, CF 2 1 0 0 1 0 1 .227
Cervelli, C 4 0 2 0 0 0 1 .316
Totals 34 3 7 3 5 5 18
2B: Damon (9, Tallet).
HR: Matsui (4, 8th inning off Carlson, 0 on, 0 out).
TB: Jeter; Damon 2; Teixeira; Matsui 4; Cano; Cervelli 2.
RBI: Swisher (22), Jeter (14), Matsui (13).
2-out RBI: Swisher.
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Cano 2; Cervelli; Rodriguez, A; Jeter.
Team RISP: 1-for-8.
Team LOB: 10.

Outfield assists: Gardner (Barajas at home).

Sabathia (W, 3-3) 8.0 5 2 2 4 5 1 3.70
Rivera (S, 7) 1.0 0 0 0 0 1 0 3.38