Rapid Reaction: Yankees 4, Reds 2 (1st game)

What it means: That the Yankees have now won 7 of their last 8, 10 of their last 12 and theoretically at least, could be back atop the AL East by the end of the day's action if they sweep the second game tonight and the Red Sox lose to San Diego today. Remarkable for a team as flawed and injury-plagued as the Yankees.

What's good: Freddy Garcia threw seven strong and tidy innings, needing only 89 pitches to hold the Reds to three hits and no earned runs, and saving the bullpen for the second game. Jorge Posada, who hadn't homered since April 23, lined one into the RF seats in the sixth with Robinson Cano on base to provide the margin of victory. David Robertson struck out Joey Votto, hitless in six at-bats so far this series, representing the tying run at the plate to end the eighth inning. Mariano Rivera made short work of the ninth inning to earn his 19th save.

What's not so good: Ramiro Pena, starting at 3d with Alex Rodriguez getting the day off, committed a hat trick of errors, two on throws and one on a hot grounder hit right at him. The two throws led directly to both of Cincinnati's runs in the fifth inning. Eduardo Nunez continued his pattern of alternating good deed/bad deed: Doubled in the ninth, got picked off second.

What's next: Second game of this day-night doubleheader, converted OF Brian Gordon (0-0, 3.38) vs. RHP Johnny Cueto (4-2, 1.68).