NEW YORK -- It's a simple equation, really: pitches left up in the strike zone, thrown to good hitters, in a small ballpark, equals trouble.
John Lackey found that Saturday at Yankee Stadium.
Lackey, who had allowed just two earned runs in his previous two starts this season, was racked for four homers leading to six runs in a 7-4 loss to the Yankees.
He allowed a two-run homer to Carlos Beltran in the first, back-to-back solo homers to Brian McCann and Alfonso Soriano in the fourth and another
homer to McCann -- this one with a runner aboard) in the sixth.
"You have to extra careful in this whole division,'' said Lackey. "We play in a yard that's pretty similar, just the other direction. It's something you kind of get used to. I've just got to do a better job of keeping the ball in the yard.''
"Every pitch he made up, they hit,'' said catcher A.J. Pierzynski. "That was it. The mistakes he made were up, and unfortunately, in this park, you pay for those mistakes, especially to right field. And all of them were hit and all of them were hit for homers. That's the way it goes here.
"He threw the ball OK other than that. Other than the mistakes, he threw the ball fine. It's just that those mistakes were magnified because they were all homers.''