The Yankees are probably going to have to win about twenty more games this year if they want to make a run for a Wild Card spot. That's a tall order for any team, particularly one that has struggled to score runs as much as the Bombers have this year. Dropping the first two games of a three game set in Tampa this weekend didn't help the cause. Fortunately the Yankees managed to turn things around in the final game of the series. Ivan Nova and Alex Cobb pitched to a draw. Cobb was solid. He gave the Rays 5.2 innings of work allowing just two runs on seven hits. Super Nova was better. He lasted 6.2 innings, also allowing just two runs to score. There was an element of luck to Nova's performance, as he did allow six walks. He also gave up a game tying homer to Evan Longoria in the sixth inning, but managed to keep the Yankees competitive.
Robinson Cano was all the Yankee offense during the standard nine innings. He homered to left in the 4th to tie the score at one run a piece. In the sixth he gave the Yankees a two to one lead on a double that scored Ichiro Suzuki. In total Robbie had three hits on the day and after a cold stretch in July is now hitting .307/.386/.510.
David Robertson was the bullpen star of the game. He pitched both the eighth and ninth innings. He allowed no hits or walks while striking out two to help deliver the Yankees to extra innings.
The Bombers broke it open in the eleventh. Alfonso Soriano put himself into scoring position with a double. Then, he stole third. Curtis Granderson knocked him in on a sacrifice fly to right, giving the Yankees the 3-2 lead. Mariano Rivera did his thing after that.
The win moves the Yankees back to 3.5 games behind Oakland for the last Wild Card slot. The team moves on to Toronto next where the Yankees have had great success this year. Here's hoping they keep it interesting.