DeSalvo allowed two runs and seven hits in 6 2-3 innings to get his first major league win in his second start, and the Yankees cruised past the Seattle Mariners 7-2 on Saturday night.
“It’s almost like I’m going out trying to impress these guys, to show that I belong in this locker room,” the New York Yankees’ 26-year-old rookie right-hander said.
“He was outstanding,” Jeter said.
“Oh, it’s incredible,” said a beaming DeSalvo, who walked three and struck out two. “I’ve waited 26 years for this.”
After scoring just two runs in its previous 22 innings, the Yankees offense broke out against Miguel Batista for seven runs and 10 hits in 2 1-3 innings.
“That’s the way our offense can roll,” said Johnny Damon, whose RBI double was part of a five-run second inning. “That second inning was huge. That’s a glimpse of what our offense can do.”
Jason Giambi, who returned after a three-game absence with a spur near his left heel, led off the second with a walk. The Yankees got six hits and five RBIs from their next seven batters. That included a double by Matsui—1 for his previous 11—an RBI single by Posada, Doug Mientkiewicz’s RBI single, an RBI double from Damon and then RBI singles by slumping Bobby Abreu (1-for-15) and Jeter.
“Two or three guys on a team can get hot. But the whole team?” said Batista (3-3), who said he was tipping his pitches. “No, something happened. … They (found) out what I was throwing. Something I have to fix.”
New York chased Batista after Robinson Cano ended an 0-for-13 skid with a RBI single in the third.
“We’re capable of doing that,” Posada said.
DeSalvo (1-0) made his first major league start against Seattle on Monday. He allowed one run in seven innings but got a no-decision. Saturday, he had a surprise for Seattle—a slow forkball he hadn’t thrown much since high school in New Castle, Penn.
The first time he threw it, to strike out Richie Sexson leading off the sixth, Sexson swung over it by about a foot and then mouthed “Wow!” back at DeSalvo in disbelief.
“He’s legitimate,” manager Joe Torre said of the top prospect he said he regretted cutting the last two spring trainings. “He was great.”
Jeter went 3-for-5 and leads the AL with a .376 batting average. Posada is second at .369. … Giambi wore soft-soled shoes instead of spikes to comfort the spur near his left heel. He went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts in his return. He has one hit in his last 16 at-bats. … Raul Ibanez hit a two-run triple in the third inning for Seattle. … Rookie LHP Eric O’Flaherty quieted the Yankees on just one hit in 4 2-3 innings in relief of Batista. New York has just six hits in 12 2-3 innings against Seattle lefties in the series. Ramirez, who starts Sunday, is left-handed. … Rodriguez went 0-for-4 and is stuck in a 1-for-13 skid.