When Curtis Granderson caught the final out of today’s game, the Yankees set a new American League record. The team, that has been decimated by injuries and picked against since the beginning of the season, is now 18-0 when scoring first to start the season. The Yankees are the only team in the major leagues who have yet to lose whenever they push the first run across. The franchise record for most consecutive wins when scoring first is 19, set in 2002.
This record speaks volumes about the team’s grittiness and pitching, which has been the strength of this club so far this season. When the Yankees score first, their starters do a good job of maintaining a lead or giving the offense a chance to stay in the game. The back end of the bullpen is also a big reason why the “no-name” Yankees have been able to rack up the W’s. The team is an amazing 21-0 when leading after six innings.
Setup man David Robertson has pitched to a 2.76 ERA with 20 strikeouts in 16.1 innings. Lefty Boone Logan has a 2.31 ERA with with 13 K’s in 11.1 innings. Rookie Preston Claiborne hasn’t allowed a run yet in eight innings. And of course, Mariano Rivera has been perfect – converting 16 saves in 16 chances.
Hiroki Kuroda has been the best starter so far, as he already has 6 wins to go with an impressive 1.99 ERA. CC Sabathia is 4-3 with a 3.19 ERA, and will pitch tomorrow against RA Dickey. The rest of the starters have been somewhat inconsistent, as Phil Hughes has strung together some good starts with some bad ones, and Andy Pettitte (now injured) has cooled off since his hot start. David Phelps turned in a solid effort today, going seven innings while giving up six hits, a run and totaling eight strikeouts; today was the longest outing of his career. His current ERA sits at 3.83.
If the pitchers can keep it up, the wins will keep on coming. Pretty amazing for a team that’s on it’s third string catcher, second string first-baseman and fourth string third-baseman.
Per Elias, the Yankees set an AL record. They are now 18-0 this season when scoring first. Longest streak in club history is 19 (2002).