Rapid Reaction: Yankees 4, Red Sox 1

WHAT IT MEANS: The Yankees' season-long five-game losing steak is over. They are just a game behind the Red Sox in the AL East as the calendar turns to June.

HEATING UP: After his last time out, CC Sabathia publicly chastised himself for his previous poor start. He said, "I'm hurting the team." Not anymore.

Sabathia revved it up on Friday night. While he mostly hovered in the low 90s, he even touched 94 with his much-discussed fastball. Sabathia had his strong slider working and he dominated much of the night. In the first two innings, the Red Sox put runners on second, but they got no further. In the fifth, he struck out the side. In the seventh, the Sox finally got him for one run on doubles by Dustin Pedroia and Mike Napoli.

Overall, though, Sabathia was the same as he ever was -- an ace. His final line was 7 1/3 innings, one earned run on six hits. He struck out a season-high 10 and walked none. He improved to 5-4 with a 3.71 ERA.

BACK TO NORMAL: After blowing his first save of the year, Mariano Rivera picked up his 19th of the season. It wasn't easy, though, as Rivera allowed two one-out singles before striking out Napoli and forcing Stephen Drew to ground back to the mound.

JOE THE VOLCANO: In the fifth, Joe Girardi erupted, becoming the first Yankee this season to be ejected from a game. The play in question was a forceout at second in which Girardi thought a throw from Jon Lester pulled the shortstop, Drew, off the bag. Second-base ump Vic Carapazza ruled him out.

What likely annoyed Girardi the most was that Carapazza did not consult with any of his fellow umpires on the close call. When Girardi returned to his office and watched the replay, he probably will agree that Carapazza got it right.

BALL FOUR: The Yankees hadn't walked in the previous three games (106 at-bats) against the Mets. That changed quickly as Brett Gardner walked to lead off the game and Mark Teixeira walked in his initial at-bat of the season in the second.

TAKING THE LEAD: After Teixeira's leadoff walk to begin the second, Vernon Wells nailed a sharp double over Jackie Bradley Jr.'s head in center. For Wells, it was his first extra-base hit in his past 32 at-bats. Jayson Nix and Ichiro Suzuki would have RBI singles off Lester and the Yankees were up 2-0.

YOUK RETURNS: In the fifth, Kevin Youkilis, in his first game back, delivered an RBI single. Youkilis had missed a month of action.

INSURANCE: After Sabathia gave up a run in the top of the seventh, Gardner took it right back with an RBI single in the bottom of the eighth.


ON DECK: On Saturday night, Phil Hughes (2-3, 4.97) faces Felix Doubront (3-2, 5.29). On Sunday night, it is Hiroki Kuroda (6-3, 2.39) versus Clay Buchholz (7-0, 1.73).

IN THE HOLE: Mike Mazzeo and I will have you covered in the blog, while Johnette Howard will author a column on Carsten Charles' outstanding night.