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The Yankees held their 63rd annual Old Timer’s Game Sunday featuring many older veterans and newer ones such as recently retired Mike Mussina.  Moose pitched to four batters in the game, with Yankees manager Joe Girardi behind the plate.

Yankee Old Timers (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Yankee Old Timers (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

By the way, the premiere of the Yankeeography of Mussina will be shown on YES Monday night at 11pm.  I plan to DVR it.

Bucky Dent, David Cone, Jesse Barfield, Homer Bush, Chad Curtis, Don Larsen, Whitey Ford, Yogi Berra, Ron Guidry, Lee Mazzili, Ron Bloomberg and many others made an appearance at or in the game.

The Clippers beat the Bombers 5-2 to win the game, but I could barely tell you who was on what team and when they were batting, pitching etc.  I just end up paying attention to who’s on camera at that time.

The highlight of the game was the return of Don Zimmer to the Bronx.  The Yankees former bench coach for Joe Torre during the Dynasty years of 1996-2003, Zimmer got in a public argument with owner George Steinbrenner and vowed to never again return to Yankee Stadium.

Apparently time softened his feelings about it and Zim returned, much to the delight of the fans and his former players.

According to mlb.com, AJ Burnett was excited to see former pitcher Dwight “Doc” Gooden at the stadium and had brought the April 1985 issue of Sports Illustrated that featured Gooden to get his autograph.

This game was obviously the first Old Timer’s Game held at the new stadium and I’m sure many wondered if it ould have the pizzaz of the games at the legendary old Yankee Stadium.  I felt it did and the legends were just playing in a nicer home.

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The Yankees completed a 3-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers Sunday at the stadium, creating a second-consecutive 2-1 victory in their first series after the all-star break.  Joba Chamberlain threw a 3-hitter with 8 strikeouts in 6 2/3 innings.

The Yankee offense generated very little for most of the series, but it made no difference as CC Sabathia and Chamberlain threw two-straight gems from the mound.  The Bronx Bombers scored both of their runs off of solo home runs from Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira in the fourth and sixth innings.

Both players had two homers in this series, Tex on Friday and Sunday and A-Rod on Saturday and Sunday.  They were also 2-4 from the plate and had Derek Jeter (0-4) or Johnny Damon (0-3, BB) managed to get on base more, the score would have been higher.  Melky Cabrera, hitting in the ninth spot, was also 0-3 on the afternoon.

Rodriguez now has 572 career home runs, one shy of Harmon Kilbrew.

Phil Coke finished the seventh inning for Chamberlain and Phil Hughes came on to strikeout 2 in the eighth and hand the save opportunity to Mariano Rivera.  Mo retired the side 1-2-3 in the ninth, preserving the 508th save of his career and 26th this season.

The game started at 2pm due to the Old Timer’s Game before it, which saw Yankee legends and veterans come together for a classic tradition.

On an afternoon where more than forty past greats of the pinstripes gathered for the final Old-Timers’ Day at Yankee Stadium, an old timer took the mound and gave the Yankees the win they needed.

39-year old Mike Mussina earned his 14th win of the year, masterfully controlling the major’s best team, 8-2 before more than 54,000 fans in attendance.

Mussina retired the final 17 batters he faced after allowing two runs to score in the second inning, but quieted the Halos’ bats the rest of the afternoon.

Moose was assisted by his battery-mate, Jose Molina, who hit his first home run in the last 221 at-bats (Sept. 5 of 2007). A-Rod, Bobby Abreu and Wilson Betemit also homered for the Yankees.

Jose Veras was dominant, striking out all three batters he faced in the eighth inning, throwing 11 of his 17 pitches for strikes. Brian Bruney took the mound for the first time since tearing a ligament in his foot on April 22 and allowed one hit and one walk before shutting down the order for the Yankees’ first victory against the Halos this season.

Abreu hit his 15th homer of the year and A-Rod hit his 24th, placing him at 542 on the career list, 6 behind Mike Schmidt. Betemit, who has constantly struggled throughout the season at the plate hit a 2-run home run in the second inning, bringing home Nady and tying the score.

A-Rod raised his average to a team-high .325 and Johnny Damon contributed with a hit. Even Jeter, who has been in a offensive slump the entire season (or more specifically, since he got his wrist injured in a hit by pitch incident last May) got a hit and RBI to raise his average to still-his-career-low .282.

The Yankees go for the series tie tomorrow with Darrell Rasner on the mound against the Halos’ ace John Lackey. Game is set for 1:05pm.

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