In the Yankees' long and storied history, the Indians have cornered the market on Yankee trouncings. In 1934, the Indians scored 24 runs against the Bronx Bombers, setting a New York record that still stands. In 2004, the Indians went into Old Yankee Stadium and won 22-0, setting a record for opponent runs at home. And today, the Indians, for good measure, matched the 22 runs scored five years ago, this time at New Yankee Stadium.
The highlight of the day for New York came in the first, when Mark Teixeira hit a two-run homer off Fausto Carmona in the bottom of the first after Chien-Ming Wang set the Indians down in order in the top of the inning. Everything went downhill from there. As in Grand Canyon downhill.
Travis Hafner greeted Wang in the second with a single. And rather than take five paragraphs to describe the rest of that never-ending inning, here's the log of what happened next:
T. Hafner singled to third - J. Peralta singled to left, T. Hafner to second - S. Choo homered to deep left center, T. Hafner and J. Peralta scored - R. Garko fouled out to catcher - B. Francisco doubled to left - A. Cabrera singled to center, B. Francisco scored - G. Sizemore doubled to deep right, A. Cabrera to third - M. DeRosa doubled to deep right, G. Sizemore and A. Cabrera scored - M. DeRosa to third on wild pitch - V. Martinez singled to right, M. DeRosa scored - A. Claggett relieved C. Wang - T. Hafner doubled to center, V. Martinez to third - J. Peralta doubled to deep center, T. Hafner and V. Martinez scored - S. Choo walked - R. Garko singled to center, J. Peralta to third, S. Choo to second - B. Francisco struck out swinging - A. Cabrera homered to deep right, J. Peralta, S. Choo and R. Garko scored - G. Sizemore homered to deep right center - M. DeRosa struck out swinging
By the time the second was over, the game was a laugher. As in the Indians laughing around the bases about how their lazy fly balls went over the right field wall. As in everybody laughing that a $1.5 billion stadium might have to be redesigned because of a fatal flaw in the park dimensions. Several of the Indian home runs would not have been out of most other major-league parks. Left-handed hitters around baseball will be looking at the highlights from this opening series licking their chops thinking about their trip to the Bronx.
The good news wasn't just limited to the offense. Fausto Carmona went six innings, and more importantly, was getting most of his outs on the ground. Contra Wang, who left his pitches up, letting Indian hitters take advantage of the jet stream to right field, Carmona worked down in the zone, spotting his four-seamer on the corners and throwing his sinker on a vertical plane. Perhaps his outing got much easier after the Indians' 14-run second, but the improvement was tangible, and hopefully this outing will be a confidence builder for the rest of this season.
It was a balanced beat-down. Seven different Indians hit home runs, and no one hit more than one. Two Indians had four hits (DeRosa, Cabrera), and three had three hits (Sizemore, Hafner, Peralta). Every starter had at least one hit, and only Indian (Shoppach) made a plate appearance in today's game without getting a hit.
Today's victory only counts for one game in the standings, unfortunately, though the satisfaction from this particular win counts as much as a months' worth of victories. Ignominious Yankee history has again been made, and it's been an honor watching it.