Posted April 04, 2013 on
AP on Fox
New York Yankees
Boston Red Sox
Andy Pettitte pitched the Yankees to their first win of the season and Mariano Rivera made a successful return to the mound in New York's 4-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Thursday night.
Brett Gardner and Francisco Cervelli homered for the Yankees, providing some unexpected power to a depleted lineup missing the ''sore four'' -- Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira and Curtis Granderson. All those All-Stars are on the disabled list, and without them New York dropped its first two games at home to the rival Red Sox.
Gardner and Cervelli each hit a solo shot, the first homer for both since they went back-to-back off Baltimore's Tommy Hunter on Sept. 6, 2011. Neither player spent much time on the active big league roster last season.
Lyle Overbay had a two-run single off Ryan Dempster (0-1), who struck out eight in his Boston debut but needed 101 pitches to get through five innings. The two-time All-Star signed a $26.5 million, two-year contract in December after spending last season with the Cubs and Rangers.
Pettitte (1-0) tossed eight sharp innings on a chilly night and Rivera entered to a standing ovation from those left in the bundled-up crowd of 40,611 as the familiar chords of Metallica's ''Enter Sandman'' blared over the Yankee Stadium speakers.
Baseball's career saves leader, set to retire after this season, missed most of last year after tearing a knee ligament May 3 while shagging flies during batting practice in Kansas City.
Rivera issued a leadoff walk to Dustin Pedroia and gave up a one-out double to Jonny Gomes before Will Middlebrooks drove in a run with a groundout. But the right-hander threw a called third strike past rookie Jackie Bradley Jr. for his 609th save and first since April 30 last year at Baltimore.
It was the 69th time Rivera has saved a win by Pettitte, a major league record. And by appearing in his 19th Yankees season, Rivera broke a tie with Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle and Jeter to set the franchise mark. Jeter will match Rivera again when the captain makes his season debut.
With fans chanting his name, Pettitte got through the eighth inning and pumped his fist before heading into the dugout for good.
Backed by three double plays -- one that he started himself -- the 40-year-old lefty allowed one only run and eight hits. He threw 94 efficient pitches and gave the New York pitching staff a huge boost after Hiroki Kuroda was pulled in the second inning Wednesday night with a bruised middle finger.
Looking for their first season-opening sweep at Yankee Stadium, the Red Sox managed only Bradley's run-scoring double in the seventh.
Pettitte, beginning his 15th season with the Yankees, earned his 246th career win and improved to 19-10 in 38 starts against Boston. He missed almost three months last season with a broken left ankle and finished 5-4 with a 2.87 ERA.
Eduardo Nunez, often a defensive liability, turned two double plays at shortstop and made a leaping grab to rob Shane Victorino of a leadoff hit in the fourth. Nunez also had two hits, including a key double.
Pettitte looked perfectly comfortable out there on a 43-degree night. He blew on his pitching hand to warm it up, but never struggled to throw strikes and had a good enough grip to command his breaking ball.
Pettitte has practically made a career of righting the ship for the Yankees. The team said he is 18-3 with an ERA below 3.00 in 27 starts with New York trying to avoid a regular-season sweep, according to research by the Elias Sports Bureau.
He was working on a five-hit shutout when Middlebrooks smacked a two-out single in the seventh and scored on a double by Bradley. David Ross made a bid for a tying homer with a long drive to left-center that was caught by Gardner just in front of the fence, near the 399-foot sign.
Cervelli greeted Clayton Mortensen with a leadoff homer in the seventh that made it 4-1.
Victorino tried to score from second base on Pettitte's wild pitch in the first inning. Cervelli was slow and a little nonchalant in retrieving the ball, then scrambled back to the plate in time to tag Victorino as both players dove headfirst.
Victorino appeared shaken up but remained in the game.
Ross singled in his first Red Sox plate appearance. ... Boston opened the 1912 season with a three-game sweep at New York on the way to its second World Series championship. Back then, the Yankees were known as the Highlanders and played at Hilltop Park. ... Looking to split up his left-handed hitters, Yankees manager Joe Girardi moved Robinson Cano up to the No. 2 spot in the lineup for the first time since Sept. 13, 2010. Kevin Youkilis batted third and Ichiro Suzuki hit sixth for the first time in his career, according to STATS. ... New York sent RHP Ivan Nova to Detroit early so he could rest up for his 1:05 p.m. start Friday against RHP Doug Fister. ... The Yankees released RHP David Aardsma.
BEST OF MAXIM
After a devastating knee injury last May, Mariano Rivera vowed to return for another season. He has followed through on the promise. In the final game of the season opening series against the Boston Red Sox, Mariano Rivera saved the Yankees first win of the year. It was his first save in what will be the final year of his career.
He entered to his iconic “Enter Sandman” intro...
It is certifiably insane to claim the Yankees needed to win last night's game. Yep. Lunacy. Booga-booga. We know better. Any blogger or writer who says it was a "must" victory - send 'em down to Columbus! That said, holy crap, did Andy Pettitte save our butts or what?Someday, when the Hall of Fame voters look back on Pettitte's career, I hope they remember...
Pettitte notched the first win of the season with eight strong.
Boston Red Sox 2 — New York Yankees 4
Andy Pettitte kept the Yankees from being swept in today’s 4-2 win over the Boston Red Sox.
With two losses to start the season, the Yankees turned to Andy Pettitte to get the first win of the season. In eight innings, the 40-year-old Pettitte allowed just one run on eight...
There is something special about watching homegrown talent succeed. That's why, even though the first win of the season is always sweet, this one, with its distinct Yankee farm flavor, was definitely one to savor. From Andy Pettitte starting the ballgame to Mariano Rivera closing it out and everything in between, the Yankee farm system showed up, defensively and offensively...
The walls were starting to close in on the Yankees after the first two games of the season. An 0-3 start would not have doomed their season, but combined with all the injuries the club has sustained the feeling of a lost season in the making would only have grown stronger.
It would be easy to say that last night Andy Pettitte and Mariano Rivera turned back the clock. It would also...
For a long time now, you’ve heard the outcries. The Yankees are too old, they need to get younger. While some of this may be true, who secured the first win of the season last night? Who pitched deep into the game to preserve the bullpen? Who came in to close the door?
Andy and Mo.
In an uncertain season, only two things are for certain. Pettitte and Rivera will always give you...
After opening the season with two losses to the Red Sox, the Yankees won their first game of the season the “old” fashioned way. Two long-time Yankees locked down the win as Andy Pettitte threw eight fantastic innings leading to Mariano Rivera’s first save of the year. If the Yankees want to pick up wins this weekend in Detroit, they will have to rely on their young pitchers...
Former steroid user and now 40-year old pitcher who is somehow magically still good Andy Pettitte led the Yankees to their first win of the year, a 4-2 defeat of the Sox at Yankee Stadium.
Pettitte went eight strong, scattering eight hits and giving up just one earned run before handing things over to Mariano Rivera, who had a rocky first appearance since his knee injury last...
After Andy Pettitte retired and came back last year, you knew he would have only done it if he thought he had a little something left in the tank. And while the Boston Red Sox didn't get a chance to see him last year, they did get to see him last night.
And boy oh boy, did he look like the Pettitte of old in the Yankees 4-2 win over the Red Sox.
He did allow eight hits...
Tossing eight innings of one-run ball, borderline Hall of Fame southpaw Andy Pettitte led New York to a 4-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Thursday at Yankee Stadium. Thanks to the 40-year-old Pettitte (1-0, 1.13 ERA), a three-time All-Star who has captured five crowns in pinstripes, the Yankees (1-3) finally triumphed for the first time in 2013. Considering New York’s everyday...
It was a farewell of sorts in New York yesterday, when Andy Pettitte made the start for the Yankees in what is more than likely is last ever Opening Week start. Pettitte was spectacular in the Yankees'4-2 win over the Red Sox, allowing one run on eight hits over eight innings. Mariano Rivera made his first appearance in nearly a year and picked up his first save of his final...
photo credit: bleacherreport.com
The analysts, experts, baseball fans, and maybe science itself don’t think the Yankees will be good this year. With the massacre of injuries and both an April starting lineup and starting rotation, with an average age of about only 33 years old (you’d think it would be higher, I know) and a couple of old guys, one would say the 27-time-Champion...