Take Two (from the) Red Sox and Call Me in the Morning
It seems that all the Yankees pitching needs is to play the Red Sox and all their woes will all be cured. The Yankees shut out the Red Sox 7-0 tonight. Mike Mussina pitched a 3-hit shutout and won his 16th game. It was Mussina's first shutout of the year, as well as his first complete game. He struck out 9 Bosox, a figure he hadn't matched since May 12. The last time he allowed three or fewer hits was on April 9 (only 2 hits), his second start of the season. He used 103 pitches in disposing of the Sox, his lowest total since May 7 when he has pitched at least 7 innings. It was just the third time that he had gone at least eight innings all year. Mussina also lowered his August ERA to 4.11 (it was 5.54 for the month before the game). It will be the first month since April that he has had an ERA under 5.00.
It's hard to tell if Mussina has turned a corner or if the stars just happened to have aligned for him tonight. Keep in mind that he has had some success against Boston (4-1 this year and 6-5 with a 1.78 ERA from 1999-2001). I'm sure thaough that the Yankees and especially Roger Clemens, who is next in the rotation, are unhappy to be leaving Boston so quickly.