Tuesday, September 15, 2009

After beanings, Jorge Posada sparks brawl against Jays in blowout loss

Yankees catcher Jorge Posada incites a bench-clearing brawl after going after Blue Jays pitcher Jesse Carlson and ends up brawling with catcher Rod Barajas.

You can't accuse the Yankees of not caring.

Getting blown out in the eighth inning, the Bombers went down fighting. Jorge Posada and Toronto lefthander Jesse Carlson were at the center of a wild bench-clearing brawl in the bottom of the eighth that didn't get a Yankee comeback going but caused emotions to run high on both sides.

Posada and Carlson were ejected, whileJoe Girardi and Carlson both had battle scars from the fracas. The Yankees went on to lose, 10-4, although that seemed like a footnote when the game was over.

Posada has words with Barajas before the brawl.

The tension had started earlier in the inning, as Carlson threw a pitch behind Posada, a ball the catcher believed was retaliation for Mark Melancon drilling Aaron Hill in the top of the inning.

Posada told catcher Rod Barajas, "You don't want to do that," as both teams emerged slowly from their respective dugouts. Home plate umpire Jim Joyceissued immediate warnings to both sides and managed to return them to their dugouts before the teams came together.

Posada drew a walk against Carlson, scoring three batters later on Brett Gardner's two-out double. Posada threw a forearm at Carlson as he crossed the plate, hitting the pitcher's glove.

Joyce immediately ejected Posada, but Carlson went after the catcher, causing the benches to clear immediately. Carlson and Posada wound up in the center of the brawl, although John McDonald, who was drilled by Melancon in Toronto on Sept. 4 - threw a punch that connected with Girardi's ear, drawing a trickle of blood.

Carlson appeared to take the worst shot, sporting a huge welt on his forehead just above his left eye, although it was unclear who was responsible for the blow. Posada was held back by CC Sabathia and Jose Molina as the players began to separate, as Sabathia eventually led his catcher into the clubhouse. Third-base ump Derryl Cousins was injured in the fight, leaving only three umps to finish the game.

The brawl overshadowed a forgettable night for the Yankees, who revealed earlier in the day that Andy Pettitte was battling soreness and fatigue in his left shoulder. Pettitte's condition raised a new batch of questions for the Yankees as October approaches.Sergio Mitre proved last night he isn't the answer to any of them.

Mitre was blasted by the Blue Jays for a second straight start, allowing seven runs on eight hits - including a career-high four home runs - over five-plus innings, squandering an early two-run lead. Mitre had allowed four homers total in his first eight starts this season.

Roy Halladay didn't have his best stuff, giving up 11 hits and a walk in six innings, but the former Cy Young winner limited the damage to two runs, stranding eight men on base to earn his 15th win.

The Yankees' lead over the Red Sox dropped to 6-1/2 games, leaving their magic number to clinch the American League East at 12. Their magic number to clinch a playoff spot is seven, meaning any combination of Yankees wins and Rangers losses totaling seven would guarantee the Bombers a trip to the postseason.

The Yankees staked Mitre to a 2-0 lead in the second, as Gardner and Derek Jeter each singled in runs against Halladay.

Mitre walked Jose Bautista to start the third, then served up the first of Travis Snider's two home runs, tying the game. Adam Lind belted a solo shot with two outs in the inning, giving Toronto its first lead of the night. Edwin Encarnacion and Snider each drilled solo shots in the fourth, boosting the lead to 5-2.

The Yankees put runners on in each of Halladay's six innings, but they were unable to score after the second.


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