Thursday, May 08, 2014
Sports News

Jeter Hits First Homer Of Season As Yanks Top Angels

Send a link to a friend  Share

[May 08, 2014]  ANAHEIM, Calif. -- The Los Angeles Angels and New York Yankees played nine innings Wednesday at Angel Stadium, but on this night, one inning would have been enough.

The Yankees scored five runs in the top of the first and were never threatened the rest of the way, cruising to a 9-2 victory and taking two of three in the series.

Many in the sellout crowd came to see Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter play his final game in Anaheim, and they didn't leave disappointed. Jeter, who is retiring at the end of the season, had two hits, including a home run in the second inning off Angels left-hander Hector Santiago that gave New York a 6-0 lead.

For Jeter, the series was somewhat of a fresh start to what was a slow start to the season. Before the series in Anaheim, he was in a 3-for-28 slump, his average was down to .240, and some were wondering why manager Joe Girardi wouldn't drop Jeter from the No. 2 spot in the batting order.

However, Jeter, who always enjoyed hitting in Anaheim (.339 lifetime average), went 5-for-11 in the series and cracked his first homer of the year.

"Absolutely, absolutely," Girardi said when asked if Jeter was driven to prove skeptics wrong. "He's always been an extremely driven person, and when he's struggling, he's going to do everything in his power to get going again. And that's what he did. He got going again."

Jeter also was in the middle of what was a messy first inning for the Angels.

After a walk by Yankees center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury, Jeter hit a routine flyball to right-center. Both center fielder Mike Trout and right fielder Collin Cowgill converged, then collided, the ball falling to the ground for an error (charged to Cowgill).

Angels manager Mike Scioscia called it a miscommunication.

First baseman Mark Teixeira had the big hit of the inning with a two-run double. By the time the rally was over, the Yankees had five runs on three hits and two walks, and they got help from the Angels defense, which committed two errors.

The second error came on a bad throw by Santiago, who rolled over his left ankle on the play but remained in the game.

The big inning provided more than enough offensive support for Yankees left-hander Vidal Nuno (1-0). He gave up one run on four hits and one walk in 6 1/3 innings to earn the second win of his career.

Between a two-out walk in the second inning to third baseman John McDonald and a leadoff double in the seventh inning by designated hitter C.J. Cron, Nuno retired 13 hitters in a row.

"I was very impressed," Girardi said. "He mixed his pitches extremely well. I think he got some outs on fastballs, cutters, curveballs, changeups, probably everything. It's just keeping them off balance, that's the important thing."

[to top of second column]

For Santiago (0-6), the first inning was too much to overcome. He lasted just 2 1/3 innings, allowing six runs (two earned) on five hits and three walks.

"It was a tough start for him," Scioscia said. "It's tough to give a team five outs like we did in the first inning, and those guys took advantage of it. Even if you take away those miscues, he was not effective tonight."

Jeter's home run of the season in the second inning increased the Yankees' lead to 6-0 before the Angels pushed across a run in the bottom of the second.

The Yankees added three runs in the eighth inning, getting a two-run single from catcher John Ryan Murphy and a sacrifice fly by right fielder Carlos Beltran.

Ellsbury, Jeter, Murphy, third baseman Yangervis Solarte and left fielder Brett Gardner each collected two hits for New York.

Cron went 3-for-4 for the Angels.

"We got beat tonight, but our guys battled," Scioscia said. "We've been playing well, even in some of the games we've lost. But tonight wasn't one of them."

NOTES: The Angels honored Yankees SS Derek Jeter before the game, Jeter's final contest in Anaheim. The 39-year-old veteran will retire at the end of the season. Angels CF Mike Trout, 1B Albert Pujols, RHP Jered Weaver and 2B Howie Kendrick presented Jeter with a standup paddleboard with the Yankees' logo on it. ... Yankees DH Alfonso Soriano needs two hits to become the seventh player in major league history with at least 1,000 career hits in both leagues. He went 0-for-5 with three strikeouts Wednesday, and he was the only New York starter to finish with no runs and no RBIs.

[ 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

< Sports index

Back to top