How quietly did Alex Rodriguez hit his 599th home run last night? It didn’t even earn him the back page of either tabloid. Unlike his chase of career homer No. 500, he’s approaching No. 600 without much fanfare. Back then, in 2007, it took him nine games to finally hit his milestone home run. But working in his favor this time: He’s got three home runs in seven at bats against tonight’s starter, Brian Bannister. And Kyle Davies, Saturday’s starter, also allowed No. 500, also on a Saturday afternoon in the Bronx. Which is to say: stay tuned.
CC Sabathia didn’t have his best stuff last night — that’s been a trend for Yankees starters thus far in the second half — but once again the bats bailed him out. So, too, did the bullpen: David Robertson’s stock rose some more after relieving Sabathia in the seventh, and Joba Chamberlain — handed a two-run lead thanks to A-Rod’s home run — bent, but didn’t break in the eighth.
Rodriguez drove in four runs on two doubles and a noteworthy home run, but Jorge Posada may have had the more adventurous night: a phantom tag of Billy Butler to end the fifth inning, a bizarre throwing error in the sixth when he tried to pick Willie Bloomquist off third after Yuniesky Betancourt struck out on a wild pitch, and almost a second error when he threw high to Mark Teixeira after
Betancourt Bloomquist struck out on a dropped third strike in the eighth. But Posada also doubled in a run in the fifth to give the Yankees a 4–3 lead that they wouldn’t relinquish. This one wasn’t especially pretty — they’d tack on some runs in the eighth, hence the 10–4 final score — but the ugly wins count all the same.