posted on Aug, 31 2004 @ 09:50 PM
Cleveland 22, NY Yankees 0
Preview - Box Score - Recap
By RONALD BLUM, AP Sports Writer
August 31, 2004
AP - Aug 31, 10:00 pm EDT
NEW YORK (AP) -- With the largest loss in their history, the New York Yankees' lead was cut to 3 1/2 games, their August slump beginning to resemble a
Omar Vizquel went 6-for-7 to tie the American League record for hits, and the Cleveland Indians routed New York 22-0 Tuesday night.
Javier Vazquez was knocked out in the second inning, Cleveland took a 15-0 lead in the fifth and Jody Gerut and Victor Martinez hit three-run homers
off Esteban Loaiza in the ninth. To make it worse for New York, owner George Steinbrenner was on hand to watch.
New York had never lost by more than 18 runs, falling 24-6 at Cleveland on July 29, 1928, and 19-1 at home against Detroit on June 17, 1925.
Previously, the Yankees' biggest shutout loss was 15-0 at home against the Chicago White Sox on May 4, 1950.
Jake Westbrook (12-6) improved to 6-1 in his last nine starts, allowing five hits in seven innings.
Cleveland, which had season highs for runs and hits (22), set a team record for largest shutout win, topping its 19-0 rout of Boston on May 18, 1955.
Vazquez, his faced bowed and wiping sweat off his face, walked off the field to boos after 1 1-3 innings, matching the shortest start of his career.
Vazquez (13-8) gave up six runs, and the Indians then scored seven off Tanyon Sturtze and three against C.J. Nitkowski.
Cleveland, which moved back over .500 at 67-66, scored three runs in each of the first three innings, then added six more in the fifth. Every Indians
batter had scored by the fifth and the top eight batters in the order all had RBIs.
Travis Hafner hit a three-run triple in the first inning, Coco Crisp homered and drove in three runs. Vizquel and Martinez had four RBIs each.
Vizquel had a chance for a seventh hit, but flied out.
It was from the start for the Yankees, who were booed early and often by the crowd of 51,777.
New York's AL East lead, which stood at 10 1/2 games on the morning of Aug. 16, was cut again by Boston, which beat Anaheim 10-7 for its 19th win in
New York, which has lost four straight home games for the first time since May 22-26, 2003, is having a season beginning to resemble a mirror image of
1978, when the Yankees dropped to fourth place and trailed the Red Sox by 14 games after play on July 19, then rebounded to win the AL East in a
The largest lead held by a team that failed to finish first was 11 games by the 1995 California Angels, according to the Elias Sport Bureau.
``We can't control Boston,'' Yankees manager Joe Torre said before the game. ``If they continue to win every single game, they're going to deserve
anything they can accomplish. The only time we can control what they do is when we play them.''
New York and Boston have a pair of three-game series left, at Yankee Stadium from Sept. 17-19 and at Fenway Park from Sept. 24-26.
Second baseman Miguel Cairo made a key mistake in the first, when he picked up Matt Lawton's one-out grounder and threw to second, where he failed to
get the out. Vazquez walked Martinez, gave up the triple to Hafner, and the rout was on.
In the fifth, John Olerud picked up Hafner's bunt on the first-base line, giving him an infield hit. Hideki Matsui hit a leadoff double in the bottom
half, then got throw out at second by Westbrook, who had fumbled Jorge Posada's comebacker. And in the seventh, Alex Rodriguez headed back to third
base instead of running home on Cairo's two-out grounder.
Vazquez has struggled in his first season with the Yankees, going 2-4 in eight starts following New York losses.
Cleveland, which had lost 11 of 14 since moving within a game of AL Central-leading Minnesota on Aug. 14, began the night seven games behind the
The previous AL player with six hits was Detroit's Carlos Pena on May 27 at Kansas City. Jorge Orta had been the last Cleveland player with six hits
in a nine-inning game, on June 15, 1980, against Minnesota. ... Vazquez also lasted 1 1-3 innings on April 14, 1998, for Montreal against Milwaukee.