[to top of second column]
Jeter, Posada, Rivera and Pettitte go all the way back to 1996, when that group won the first of four World Series championships in five years. They'd like nothing more than to add another ring.
"You have to pitch in the playoffs," Jeter said after Sunday night's 4-1 victory at Minnesota. "You're not going to have too many 10-9 games. Most of the games are gong to be close. We scored a couple runs late today, but even this game was 2-1 after, what, seven? We're going to have to pitch, have to execute."
The Yankees celebrated in Minnesota by jumping on the mound and spraying champagne in the clubhouse, but the party was rather subdued. It's only the first round, after all, and that doesn't mean much in the Bronx Bomber book.
They've got the look, however, of a team on track.
"As we move on to the ALCS, our team's focus remains the same," owner George Steinbrenner said in a statement Monday. "With the support of the greatest fans in the world, we will continue to march forward as we have done all year."
Rodriguez was the offensive star against Minnesota, going 5 for 11 with two homers and six RBIs -- including several clutch hits.
Jeter and Hideki Matsui homered in the opener to get the offense going, and Mark Teixeira went deep to end Game 2 in the 11th inning. After tying that one with a two-run shot in the ninth, Rodriguez evened Game 3 with a home run in the seventh. Posada hit a go-ahead drive in the same inning, giving the Yankees six homers in the series and plenty of momentum for the ALCS.
"I know a lot of things get said about their payroll and all that stuff, but the bottom line is they're just great baseball players," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "They know how to get it done, and they play with class."
Which is what lured Sabathia during free agency. Well, that and a $161 million deal.
"This is what I envisioned when I signed up in December," he said. "It's all coming true."
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
< Sports index
Back to top
News | Sports | Business | Rural Review | Teaching & Learning | Home and Family | Tourism | Obituaries
Law & Courts |
Spiritual Life |
Health & Fitness |
Calendar | Letters to the Editor