The New York Yankees fell just short in trying to match their longest win streak since the mid-1980s.
They'll look to recover behind the surging Phil Hughes in Wednesday's home series finale against the Atlanta Braves.New York (41-26) came into Tuesday's game looking to equal its longest successful runs in the last half-century, 11-game streaks in 1964 and 1985, but fell 4-3.It was a frustrating night for the Bronx Bombers, who saw Mark Teixeira thrown out at the plate by right fielder Jason Heyward in the fifth inning while third baseman Chipper Jones cut down Curtis Granderson in the seventh after snaring a sharp grounder by Teixeira."None of the breaks kind of went our way tonight," Teixeira said.Atlanta (36-32) won for the second time in nine games as Craig Kimbrel cruised through the top of New York's batting order for his NL-leading 20th save."You still feel that you're going to win the game because that's what we've been doing but he's an outstanding closer," manager Joe Girardi said.Girardi will hand the ball Wednesday to Hughes (7-5, 4.50 ERA), who is 3-0 with a 1.69 ERA in his last three outings and looking for a fifth straight win.Hughes gave up one run over six innings Friday and struck out a season-high nine in a 7-2 victory at Washington. He's 4-0 with a 3.96 ERA in his last four interleague starts."I feel better with everything with my stuff," said Hughes, who is 3-0 with a 2.25 ERA in his last three home starts. "Aggressiveness has played a key role with that, just attacking hitters, when I fall behind just coming with my fastball."Hughes will try to give the Yankees their 20th straight start of at least six innings. New York starters have a major league-best 2.15 ERA in June.The right-hander's lone appearance against Atlanta came when he threw two hitless innings of relief in a 4-0 road loss June 23, 2009.Tommy Hanson (7-4, 3.32) won that game for the Braves with 5 1/3 innings in his fourth start as a rookie. He hasn't faced the Yankees since.Hanson is 7-2 with a 3.82 ERA in 11 career interleague starts, but he's 6-0 with a 1.22 ERA in seven starts against the AL East. The right-hander failed to record a win for the first time versus an East club Friday, allowing two unearned runs over 5 1/3 innings in a 4-2 victory over Baltimore.Heyward also shined at the plate Tuesday for the Braves as he singled and tripled. He's hitting .340 over his last 15 games.Dan Uggla, meanwhile, struck out in all four at-bats to fall to 2 for 18 against New York this year.The Braves finally managed to hold AL hits leader Derek Jeter without one Tuesday as the Yankee captain went 0 for 3. Jeter, the all-time interleague hits leader with 342, is 7 for 18 in New York's four victories over Atlanta this year.New York leads baseball with 101 homers and 22 in interleague play. Atlanta's seven interleague homers represent the majors' fifth-worst total.
Tommy Hanson has a 5-2 record with a 2.44 ERA through eight starts on the road this season (4.59 Home ERA). Also, Hanson has not allowed more than two earned runs in any of his eight road starts this season. He pitches at Yankee Stadium Wednesday.