Yankees 5, Mets 1

Eduardo Nunez did quite an impression of Derek Jeter.

Filling in for the injured star shortstop, Nunez got the big

hits, made a clutch throw – and navigated his first postgame

session in the interview room.

Nunez had an RBI single among his career-high four hits and

threw out Jose Reyes at third base on a favorable call for the New

Yankees in a 5-1 victory over the crosstown rival Mets on Friday


”I know he’s coming back,” Nunez said of Jeter, who could

return from the disabled list Monday. ”Play hard, and one time my

moment is coming for playing every day. These two weeks is a big

opportunity for me to show my manager, myself that I could play

every day.”

And he’s come through. Nunez has played in all 16 games Jeter

has been out with a calf strain. He is hitting .309 (17 for 55)

with six RBIs in that period and the Yankees are 13-3.

”He’s done a good job of just trying to be himself,” manager

Joe Girardi said. ”I’ve been very pleased with the way he’s played

in Derek’s absence.”

Mark Teixeira hit a two-run double, and Alex Rodriguez and

Robinson Cano added RBI doubles. Ivan Nova (8-4) and six relievers

stifled a Mets’ offense that scored 54 runs in their last five

games, helping the Yankees win their season-high sixth straight


Jonathon Niese (7-7) was pitching for the first time since

leaving his start June 25 with a rapid heartbeat. After giving up

three runs in the first, he shut down the Yankees through six

innings of one of the most anticipated Subway Series matchups in

the past several years.

Girardi emphasized that to stop the Mets it was essential to

keep speedy leadoff batter Reyes in check. Reyes, who A-Rod called

pregame ”the world’s greatest player,” did have his 42nd multihit

game of the season but was tagged out in the seventh trying to

advance to third on a flyout to center with one out and the score


”If he’s safe the momentum goes back in their favor,” Yankees

outfielder Curtis Granderson said.

Reyes electrified the largest crowd in Citi Field history,

42,020, when he tagged up from first on a fly to deep center. He

took off for third when the relay bounced away from Nunez, but

Nunez threw a one-hopper to third base and Rodriguez made a sweep

tag that on replay appeared to miss Reyes, who was sliding


”I think I just touched his sleeve,” Rodriguez said. ”I

watched the replay and I wasn’t sure.”

Regardless of the call, Reyes would try for third again.

”I try to be aggressive on the base paths, and nothing is going

to change that,” he said. ”That’s the way I played in my career,

and I’m going to continue to play like that and put pressure on the

other team.”

Home plate umpire Jerry Layne was behind Rodriguez when he

called Reyes out.

”I had him tagging him on the side by the belt-buttocks area

for an out,” Layne told a pool reporter. ”I called what I


Reyes leaped up to contest the call and third base coach Chip

Hale quickly moved in between the NL’s leading hitter and Layne.

Manager Terry Collins hurried out of the dugout, and after several

moments of objecting with his arms held wide, he was ejected by


”I didn’t know if he missed him until I saw the replay, which I

thought he missed him,” Collins said. ”I just thought he tagged

him high. That was my argument.”

Girardi called on Mariano Rivera to face Reyes in the ninth with

a runner on first and the Yankees leading 5-1. Reyes grounded out

to third. Rivera did give up a hit before finishing it.

Nova won his fourth straight decision, giving up seven hits and

a run over five innings. With Bartolo Colon scheduled to return

Saturday and Phil Hughes only days away from being ready to rejoin

the team, Nova could find himself the odd-man out unless the

Yankees use a six-man rotation.

The Yankees broke out early against Niese. Nick Swisher singled

leading off and Granderson followed with a hit. Batting

right-handed, the switch-hitting Teixeira then lined a double down

the right field line for two runs. Cano also had a one-out double

to the opposite field to make it 3-0 and bring on the ”Let’s go

Yankees!” chants.

”Let’s go Mets!” calls broke out when the home team led off

the bottom half with two straight singles. But Carlos Beltran

popped out and Cano turned a stellar double play on Daniel Murphy’s

difficult grounder.

The Mets scored in the second with Ruben Tejada getting the last

of three straight singles to cut it to 3-1.

The Mets loaded the bases in the fifth but Angel Pagan struck

out on a breaking pitch.

”You can’t always do the same thing,” Nova said. ”Last year I

got men on base and I’d go to my fastball so now I use all my


Nunez had a run-scoring single off Bobby Parnell in the eighth

and Rodriguez hit an RBI double high off the wall in left-center

off D.J. Carrasco in the ninth.

NOTES: The Yankees are scheduled to open the 2011 season at

Tampa Bay, according to a draft of a preliminary schedule. The

Yankees are also in negotiations to play an exhibition that would

open the Marlins new ballpark. … Mets RHP Manny Acosta did not

break his wrist Thursday, according to Collins. The Mets could make

a move, though, if the wrist is too sore to allow Acosta to pitch

this weekend.