Photograph of Yankee players celebrating their 6-3 win over the Cleveland Indians--from left, Wilson Betemit (14), Melky Cabrera (28), Robinson Cano (24) Derek Jeter (2), Johnny Damon (18) and Bobby Abreu, right--by Frank Franklin II/AP

  • Yankees 6, Indians 3: Consider for a moment what situation the Yankees would have been in if they had lost this game. They would have been 3-6 (with the six losses coming in two sweeps) on a nine-game homestand and would have started a road trip in Detroit on a four-game losing streak. The Tigers swept the Yankees in the Bronx last week. To top that off, they would be sending the never-entertaining Kei Igawa to the mound.

    Good thing Mike Mussina and the Yankees' bats showed up Thursday afternoon. The Stanford graduate gave up three runs in five innings and got relieved by Princeton graduate Ross Ohlendorf, who pitched two scoreless innings. Johnny Damon, Jason Giambi, Robinson Cano and Wilson Betemit all hit homers. Giambi's was a two-run shot; the rest came with the bases empty. When the bottom four hitters are not automatic outs, the Yankees look like a completely different team. Too bad those spots only show up in one out of every four games. Except Jose Molina. He doesn't show up to hit at all. Until Alex Rodriguez gets back -- seems like Thursday is the earliest chance of that -- the lineup will need all hands on deck.