Distance to the RF pole at Yankee Stadium? 314 feet. Distance of Johnny Damon's two-run, tie-breaking home-run in the seventh inning? 315 feet.
New York got two runs in the first off Dice, the second on coming on a double by Jorge Posada. After that hit, Matsuzaka retired 12 of the next 13 batters -- and the Red Sox tied it up. Manny Ramirez hit a solo shot to right in the second and Julio Lugo tripled and scored on David Ortiz's fly ball to left in the third.
The teams' captains traded solo home runs (Derek Jeter in the 5th, Jason Varitek in the 7th) before Damon gave the MFY a 5-3 lead.
Facing Joba Chamberlain in the 8th, Kevin Youkilis walked and, with two outs, Mike Lowell singled. But JD Drew fanned against the Hut. Mariano Rivera set down Varitek (K), Coco Crisp (K) and Lugo (L4) in the ninth with a problem.
This was a game the Yankees had to win -- and they did. Nothing to do but brush this one aside -- which is easy, knowing it's August 29 and we have a seven-game lead -- and get ready to humiliate Fat Billy tomorrow.
Daisuke Matsuzaka (3.76, 120 ERA+) / Andy Pettitte (3.69, 116 ERA+)
Stats 'n stuff.