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New York at Detroit

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N.Y. Yankees (11-10) «000710000890
Detroit (11-10)001000005670

Joba, Swisher's two home runs fuel Yankees past Tigers

CBSSports.com wire reports
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DETROIT -- Joba Chamberlain showed the stuff that makes the New York Yankees want to keep him in the rotation.

Chamberlain gave up a run in seven innings and got plenty of support from Nick Swisher's two homers in New York's 8-6 victory against the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday night.

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"We'll debate this forever, but this is what we think he can give us as a starter," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said.

Chamberlain (1-0) gave up three hits and three walks while matching a career high for innings pitched. He looked comfortable as a starter after beginning and ending last season as a reliever, winning his first game since July 30, 2008.

The hard-throwing right-hander was at his best after Swisher's three-run homer and Hideki Matsui's two-run double in the seven-run fourth gave him a cushion.

"After the third inning, I said, 'Enough is enough,' " Chamberlain recalled. "They've got a great lineup and I knew I had to get things under control, so I really started to attack."

The Yankees might've found their groove in the Motor City.

"All cylinders were clicking," Swisher said.

New York won two straight in Detroit by a combined score of 19-6 after losing the series opener and three in a row at Boston for a season-high four game skid.

Besides the recent results on the field, the Yankees got some good news from their minor league complex.

Three-time MVP Alex Rodriguez could rejoin them within 10 days, according to the doctor who operated on his hip, well ahead of his May 15 target date.

"Are we starting to get excited? Yes," Girardi said. "He's taken several steps this week and not had any setbacks."

Yankees right-hander Chien-Ming Wang was scheduled for a bullpen session Thursday and to pitch in an extended spring training game on Saturday.

"It's only going to get better when we get Alex back and Wang back," Swisher said. "If we can keep getting this pitching and hitting, it's going to be a fun year."

Swisher, acquired in November from the Chicago White Sox, has hit a team-high seven homers to help the Yankees, who are a game over .500 so far.

"You wonder what our record would be without him," Girardi said. "He's the reason we emphasized depth so much. We wanted to have guys like Swish that could get hot and really help us. He's been hitting the ball, and tonight he was diving all over the place on defense."

Swisher became the 10th player in team history to hit a home run from both sides of the plate in one game.

"That's awesome," he said.

Rick Porcello (1-3) allowed a season-high six runs, six hits and three walks while lasting a season-low 3 2/3 innings.

"I've got to be better," Porcello said.

Placido Polanco's sacrifice fly in the third was the only run the Tigers scored against Chamberlain, and manager Jim Leyland was disappointed they didn't score more because Miguel Cabrera ended the inning with a strikeout.

"I always feel like a million dollars when Cabrera is up, particularly with men on base," Leyland said. "But you have to give Chamberlain credit, he threw a nasty hook."

After Phil Coke pitched a perfect eighth, the Tigers chased Jonathan Albaladejo with three runs before Mariano Rivera entered to get the final out.

Rivera did, but not until after Curtis Granderson hit a three-run homer to make it 8-6, to seal Girardi's 100th victory with the Yankees.

"I had no idea," Girardi said. "I'd like to get 100 in a season, though."

Notes

  • Detroit's Carlos Guillen (right Achilles' tendon) was in the lineup as a DH for the sixth consecutive game, but the team hopes he's healthy enough to play LF Friday at home in the series opener against Cleveland.
  • Yankees RHP Ian Kennedy was evaluated Wednesday at New York Presbyterian Hospital and tests showed a spasm in his middle finger.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Nick Swisher and Hideki Matsui drive in a combined seven of the Yankees' eight runs.  (AP)
Nick Swisher and Hideki Matsui drive in a combined seven of the Yankees' eight runs. (AP)

Players of the Game
Detroit

C. Granderson
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 3
New York

N. Swisher
AB 5
R 2
H 2
HR 2
RBI 4
 
New York Yankees
Derek Jeter, SS5100012 .278
    Angel Berroa, 3B0000000 .250
Johnny Damon, LF4121110 .297
    Brett Gardner, CF0000000 .220
Mark Teixeira, 1B3100200 .197
Hideki Matsui, DH2113300 .295
Robinson Cano, 2B5010007 .371
Jorge Posada, C4110101 .277
Nick Swisher, RF5224002 .307
Melky Cabrera, CF-LF5110002 .311
Ramiro Pena, 3B-SS3010101 .227
Totals3689882  
Batting
2B - Johnny Damon (2, Porcello), Hideki Matsui (5, Rapada)
HR - Nick Swisher 2 (7, Porcello, Rapada)
RBI - Johnny Damon (9), Hideki Matsui 3 (8), Nick Swisher 4 (19)
2-OUT RBI - Johnny Damon (2), Hideki Matsui 3 (4)
SB - Jorge Posada (1, 2nd base off Porcello/Laird)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
DP - Posada-Cano
New York Yankees
Joba Chamberlain (W,1-0) 7311360 3.13
Phil Coke 1000010 4.15
Jonathan Albaladejo 0.2344110 8.18
Mariano Rivera 0.1111001 3.12
HBP - Laird (by Joba Chamberlain)
Pitches-Strikes - Joba Chamberlain 88-50, Phil Coke 11-9, Jonathan Albaladejo 24-11, Mariano Rivera 7-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joba Chamberlain 5-9, Phil Coke 1-1
Batters Faced - Joba Chamberlain 27, Phil Coke 3, Jonathan Albaladejo 6, Mariano Rivera 2
Detroit Tigers
Curtis Granderson, CF4113100 .241
Placido Polanco, 2B4001000 .256
Magglio Ordonez, RF3000110 .241
Miguel Cabrera, 1B3110113 .377
Carlos Guillen, DH4120011 .230
Gerald Laird, C2001021 .286
Brandon Inge, 3B3211102 .319
Josh Anderson, LF4010023 .341
Ramon Santiago, SS3110012 .257
Totals3067648  
Batting
2B - Carlos Guillen (4, Albaladejo), Brandon Inge (3, Albaladejo)
HR - Curtis Granderson (7, M. Rivera)
SF - Placido Polanco (1), Gerald Laird (1)
SH - Ramon Santiago (3)
RBI - Curtis Granderson 3 (15), Placido Polanco (14), Gerald Laird (6), Brandon Inge (18)
2-OUT RBI - Curtis Granderson 3 (5)
CS - Miguel Cabrera (1, 2nd base by Chamberlain/Posada)
Team LOB - 5
Detroit Tigers
Rick Porcello (L,1-3) 3.2666311 6.23
Clay Rapada 1.1222201 13.50
Joel Zumaya 2100010 0.00
Ryan Perry 1000300 3.52
Juan Rincon 1000000 5.79
IBB - Teixeira by Clay Rapada
Pitches-Strikes - Rick Porcello 75-43, Clay Rapada 29-16, Joel Zumaya 22-16, Ryan Perry 28-14, Juan Rincon 7-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Rick Porcello 5-5, Clay Rapada 3-1, Ryan Perry 2-1
Batters Faced - Rick Porcello 20, Clay Rapada 8, Joel Zumaya 7, Ryan Perry 6, Juan Rincon 3
Game Information
Attendance - 28348
Game Time - 2:57
Temperature - 51
Umpires - Home - Brian Runge, First Base - Brian Knight, Second Base - Jim Joyce, Third Base - Derryl Cousins