Chase Headley sure knows how to make an entrance – the pinch hitter was traded from San Diego to the Yankees yesterday and jumped straight off a plane to score a game-winning walk-off single.
The 30-year-old, who had spent his whole MLB career at the Padres before yesterday’s trade, only had time to introduce himself to his new teammates during the warm up before the Yankees 2-1 victory over Texas Rangers.
But the third baseman made an instant impression on his new side as Headley’s left-centre field shot saw Brain Roberts home in the 14th inning to give the Yankees victory.
Headley’s new teammates mobbed their hero who appeared for the Padres less than 48 hours prior to his switch.
Headley was part of a three-man trade yesterday which saw him make the switch to New York while Yangervis Solarte and Rafael De Paula went in the opposite direction.
According to MLB.com, Headley only had time for a shave at Chicago’s Wrigley Field while preparing for the Padres game against the Cubs (the Cubs went on to thump the visitors 6-0) but was told to pack his bags and say his goodbyes before flying to New York.
And boy did it go his way.
With the game scoreless through the regulation nine innings, it took until the 13th for the sides to trade runs.
J. P. Arencibia gave the Rangers a slim advantage with a homer off a fly ball to left-centre field which left David Huff dispirited.
Fortunately for the Yankees, Brett Gardner came to Huff’s rescue as he hit a double from a right-field line drive.
Team play from Jeter
Derek Jeter played the team game by giving a sacrificial fly to get Gardner to third and the move was completed when Jacoby Ellsbury snuck a single to see Gardner home.
At the top of the 14th Jeff Francis shutout the Rangers which gave the initiative back to the home side.
With one out Roberts smashed a ground-rule double with a line drive down right field and Francisco Cervelli singled to move Roberts to third.
Headley stepped up and did the rest with his fantastic line drive down left field to see Roberts home.
Joe Girardi could not be happier to see his new third baseman making the perfect start to his Yankees career.
The four-game series at Yankee Stadium is now tied at 1-1 as the home side (51-48) continue to push for the American League East division, four games behind Baltimore.
The Rangers (40-60) are having a miserable season and sit bottom of the AL West division, a whopping 21.5 games behind leaders Oakland.