Three Peat?

By Francis Walker
Updated: June 4, 2008

Derek Jeter Mariano Rivera S HEA STADIUM in FLUSHING, NEW YORK — Derek Jeter’s solo homer in the top of the first proved to the quintessential and decisive factor, as the New York Yankees defeated the New York Mets, 3-2, in game four of the World “Subway” Series.

The Yankees, who now have a commanding 3-1 series lead, can win their third consecutive championship in game five at Shea Stadium tonight. The Yankees will send starting pitcher, Andy Pettitte against Al Leiter in the fifth and perhaps the final game.

Jeter, having gone 2 for 5 with a triple and two runs scored, extended his hitting streak in World Series games to 13, as his solo homer in the top of the first put the Yankees on top, 1-0. In the second, Paul O’Neill, who went 2 for 5, ripped the baseball down the right field corner, following an RBI sacrifice fly to centerfield from Scott Brosius, extending the Yankees lead to 2-0. Jeter led off the third with a triple to the centerfield wall that set up a run-scoring ground out by Luis Sojo. The Yankees jumped ahead of the Mets, 3-0.

In the bottom of the third, however, Mike Piazza’s two-run homer to leftfield off Yankee starter, Denny Neagle, brought the Mets to within one run. That was as close as the game ever got.

Neagle pitched only 4 2/3 innings, as Yankee manager Joe Torre replaced him with David Cone, who forced Piazza to pop out in the fifth. Cone, having pitched to only one batter, was removed and was replaced by Jeff Nelson and Mike Stanton. After Neagle’s departure, the Yankees bullpen held the Mets scoreless during the next 4 1/3 innings. Mariano Rivera came into the ball game in the eighth to retire the final six Met hitters to earn his first save of the series.

Bernie Williams’ hitting woes continued in the World Series, as he has yet to record a base hit. Williams is still struggling at 0 for 15.