Yankees beat Orioles in Game 1 of the ALDS, and take a 1-0 lead.
You could not ask for anything better than what C.C Sabathia delivered in this game one. That was every bit of what an ace of a staff is all about.
This was the 2009 Sabathia. In 09 — not only did he pitch tremendously — but he got big outs. That was the difference between the 2010 and 2011 Sabathia — he got big outs.
The thing I notice and loved from C.C’s performance tonight, was his ability to go inside, and get hitter to pop-up with that fastball. He came inside to the Oriole batters in the first couple of innings, to not show the slider or change-up early in the game. C.C wanted to show the Oriole hitters something different than just the same route of getting ahead for a strikeout.
Sabathia knew the Oriole hitters were going to be aggressive in the first coupe of innings. So his strategy was to come inside with the fastball and make them get themselves out. These Oriole hitters seen Sabathia many times over the years. He had to change his game, a little.
This was one of Sabathia’s biggest postseason wins. He’s pitched well and long before, but the situations he was in when the Orioles had runners in many situations; especially in the 8th inning with J.J Hardy hits the leadoff double and stranded him at second. He made so many unbelievable, clutch pitches. His fastball location was the big part of that. The location he had on it was scary good.
C.C’s game one win sets a tone. It adds more confidence to the Yankee team and it takes a little bit of that hope from Baltimore.
Russell Martin: All year, Martin has been mysteriously clutch — and with mysterious pop.
Not only that homerun of the Orioles’ big time closer Jim Johnson to give the Yanks the lead, but he exposed Johnson by opening up a rally for his teammates. Johnson was suppose to get three outs after that homer to Martin. Not unravel things.