Phil Hughes was making his first start in almost three months, and the Indians made sure it was a short one. They scored two runs off him in the first, making him throw close to 30 pitches. His fastball was sitting in the low 90s, several mph below where he usually is, and he couldn't throw it by Tribe bats.
Meanwhile, Justin Masterson dominated the Yankees for eight innings, throwing sinker after sinker.
Brooks Baseball's PitchFX tool shows that Justin essentially go through his outing throwing four-seam and two-seam fastballs. Given how well he was spotting the fastball, he didn't need need an off-speed pitch.
Pitch Statistics Pitch Type Avg Speed Max Speed Avg H-Break Avg V-Break Count Strikes / % Swinging Strikes / % Linear Weights Time to Plate FF (FourSeam Fastball) 94.48 97.1 -7.09 2.86 46 31 / 67.39% 3 / 6.52% -2.4627 0.401 SI (Sinker) 92.91 95.6 -9.56 -2.10 57 35 / 61.40% 6 / 10.53% -1.8107 0.407 SL (Slider) 84.47 88.4 2.28 -2.46 9 7 / 77.78% 1 / 11.11% 0.4935 0.447 Pitch classifications provided by the Gameday Algorithm and may be inaccurate.
Pitch Type LWTS correspond to how many runs were likely to score on a particular pitch based on average run expectancy when each pitch was thrown and what happened as a result. Negative scores indicate more effective pitches.
Time to Plate is the time, in seconds, that it takes an average pitch of this type to reach the plate. This is strongly correlated with velocity, but also factors in movement.
Matt LaPorta returned from the DL, and despite not having an at-bat of any kind in 19 days, he was locked in at the plate, going 2-for-4. His return will mean that Carlos Santana will be a full-time catcher again, and will shift Lou Marson back to the bench.
Lonnie Chisenhall smoked his first major-league home run in the seventh inning, against a left-handed reliever to boot. The conventional wisdom seems to be that the Indians will need to platoon someone with Chisenhall until he gets betters better against left-handed pitching, though it's tough for a hitter to get better against something he never faces. The blast finally bumped the Tribe lead to 3-0, and they would need would need more insurance before the night was over.
The Indians added two more runs in the eighth thanks to Sergio Mitre's wildness. The Yankee reliever walked three batters, including Carlos Santana with the bases loaded. Grady Sizemore followed with a sacrifice fly, and the Indians went into the ninth with a 5-0 lead.
Vinnie Pestano was called on to finish things off, but he didn't have it, although Michael Brantley took a bad route to Nick Swisher's line drive. He allowed the first three to reach, and he was pulled with runners on second and third with nobody out and a run in. Chris Perez calmed things down, allowing two more runs to score, but both coming on outs. He struck out Brett Gardner to end the game.
And now for the Derek Jeter 3,000 hit watch: he's not there yet.