for this game

Pettitte leads Yankees to sweep of Athletics

Jul 20, 2008 - 9:17 PM By Larry Fleisher PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

BRONX, New York (Ticker) -- The New York Yankees probably did not anticipate many opportunities against Justin Duchscherer and that's exactly what happened. Fortunately for them, Andy Pettitte was slightly better and Jason Giambi was able to pull one over the wall.

Pettitte pitched eight outstanding innings and Giambi homered as New York completed a three-game sweep of the Oakland Athletics with a 2-1 victory on Sunday afternoon.

The Yankees won their season-high seventh straight home game and did it by scratching out a win against Duchscherer, who came into the game with the lowest ERA in the majors at 1.82.

This win put the Yankees (53-45) a season-high eight games over .500 and was their 13th win in 43 games when scoring three runs or less. It also was their 19th one-run win in 30 games and manager Joe Girardi figured it might be another tight one.

"Good teams always find a way to win because it's not always going to be the way you draw it up," Girardi said.

Duchscherer looked the part of an All-Star, holding the Yankees to two runs and six hits and keeping them off the basepaths, which was completely different from Saturday when New York stranded 21, including 12 in the first six innings.

"It seemed like he struggled a little bit early on and I thought we were going to get to him but he settled in and threw a tough game," Pettitte said. "You know with the first half that he's been having, so you knew it was going to be tough. But they've all been tough lately and you got to make good pitches. More than anything I just try to worry about what I'm trying to do out there and try to limit my mistakes and fortunately I was able to do that today."

Pettitte came into the game with two losses in his previous three starts following a personal four-game winning streak. He performed like the pitcher that scattered four hits over eight innings on July 8 against Tampa Bay.

In this one, Pettitte took a 1-0 lead into the sixth behind Alex Rodriguez's sacrifice fly in the third. He gave up Ryan Sweeney's one-out RBI single but got Bobby Crosby to bounce into a double play.

"His stuff was great all day," Girardi said of his lefthander. "It didn't taper off as it got into the later innings. He got over the 100-pitch mark and he was still strong. It was as good as he's thrown all year."

The tie only lasted a few minutes as Giambi continued his mastery of Duchscherer by lifting a 1-1 pitch over the short porch in right field. It was his 20th home run of the season and the fourth in eight career at-bats off the All-Star righthander.

"The kid has got great young arm and he's got idea on how to pitch," Giambi said. "I've been lucky enough to kind of guess with him and kind of pick pitches out and think along with him because he doesn't make a lot of mistakes. Even like today, the home run that I hit really wasn't a mistake, I just happened on it and I got a Yankee

Stadium homer."

"Giambi just seems like my nemesis," Duchscherer said. "No matter what I throw at him, he seems to find a way to beat me."

It also was Giambi's 13th home run that have tied the game or put the Yankees in front and it came on the first pitch that he swung at Sunday.

"Big G's been big for us this year there's no doubt about it," Girardi said.

Given the lead again, Pettitte finished his 114-pitch performance with two perfect innings. He tied a season high by striking out nine for the third time this season and did issue a walk for the fourth time.

"More than anything, it was a hot, hot day yesterday and the guys had to play a lot of innings," Pettitte said. "I just wanted to try as hard I could to not make my guys stand out there on the field and try to get to get them back in the dugout."

Mariano Rivera, who allowed a run in a tie game on Saturday, gave up a one-out single to Sweeney in the ninth. He was also helped out when Sweeney was thrown out at second on a fielder's choice after right fielder Bobby Abreu lost Crosby's flyball in the sun.

Rivera finally nailed down his 24th save in as many opportunities when Jose Molina threw out pinch runner Rajai Davis attempting to steal second.

"I know he's pinch running because he's going to attempt to steal," Molina said. "That's all I need to know. Someone comes into the game to steal a base, I'm going to try and shut it down.

Oakland lost its season-high fifth game and has dropped 12 of its last 19 contests overall. The Athletics managed just five hits and were held to one run or less for the 27th time this season.

"It's kind of the same story," Oakland second baseman Mark Ellis said. "The pitchers throw good and the (lineup) isn't doing well."








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    OAKLAND 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 5 1
    NY YANKEES 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 x 2 7 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: OAK - JUSTIN DUCHSCHERER, ALAN EMBREE (8TH) AND ROB BOWEN, KURT
    SUZUKI (8TH)
    NYY - ANDY PETTITTE, MARIANO RIVERA (9TH) AND JOSE
    MOLINA

    HOME RUNS: OAK - NONE
    NYY

    Jul 20 3:35 PM
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    Athletics 1, Yankees 2  Top 9, 0 OutsJul 20 3:29 PM
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    Athletics 1, Yankees 2  Bot 8, 0 OutsJul 20 3:20 PM
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    Athletics 1, Yankees 2  Bot 7, 0 OutsJul 20 2:59 PM


  • AL
    AT NY YANKEES - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JASON GIAMBI (20) TO RIGHT WITH 1 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF JUSTIN DUCHSCHERER.
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 1, NY YANKEES 2
    DUE UP FOR NY YANKEES: R CANO (.257, 1-FOR-2)

    Athletics 1, Yankees 2  Bot 6, 0 OutsJul 20 2:46 PM
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    Athletics 1, Yankees 2  Bot 6, 0 OutsJul 20 2:46 PM


  • AL
    AT NY YANKEES - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY RYAN SWEENEY SCORED JACK HANNAHAN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, R SWEENEY ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 1
    NY YANKEES 1 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: B CROSBY (.257, 0-FOR-2)

    Athletics 1, Yankees 1  Top 6, 0 OutsJul 20 2:39 PM
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    Athletics 1, Yankees 1  Top 6, 0 OutsJul 20 2:39 PM


  • AL
    AT NY YANKEES - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY ALEX RODRIGUEZ SCORED DEREK JETER.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, B ABREU ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 0
    NY YANKEES 1 BOTTOM, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR NY YANKEES: J GIAMBI (.251, 0-FOR-0, BB)

    Athletics 0, Yankees 1  Bot 3, 0 OutsJul 20 1:58 PM
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