Garcia stung early but not wild
Many fans had not yet settled in their seats Monday night before the Yankees fell behind, 2-0, to the Twins, who jumped all over Freddy Garcia. After Jamey Carroll, who had singled, made the second out trying to steal second base, Minnesota strung together four hits – a double by Joe Mauer and singles by Josh Willingham, Justin Morneau and Ryan Doumit for the two runs.
Command issues plagued Garcia’s first start April 10 at Baltimore when he set an American League record with five wild pitches. That was one more wild pitch in 4 2/3 innings than Freddy threw all last season in 146 2/3 innings. At least he did not push runners around the bases by throwing away from his catcher’s mitt this time.
The Yankees stunned former teammate Carl Pavano in the bottom of the first, however, and gave Garcia the lead. Derek Jeter extended his club record for leadoff home runs to 26 with a drive to right. Curtis Granderson followed with another poke into the right field seats, this one reaching the second deck.
It marked the first time the Yankees hit two home runs to start a game since Sept. 23, 2005 by Jeter and Robinson Cano against the Blue Jays. Not that the Yankees were finished scoring. Alex Rodriguez beat out an infield single and continued to second base on a throwing error by third baseman Danny Valencia. One out later, Mark Teixeira singled to right to put the Yanks up, 3-2.
Garcia seemed to settle down as he retired the Twins in order in each of the next two innings. His control did not appear a problem this time out.