Despite Win in Toronto, Yankees Officially Eliminated From Playoffs

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The New York Sun

The Yankees will miss the postseason for the first time since starting their run in 1995.

Mike Mussina pitched five shutout innings to earn his 19th win, Jason Giambi homered and the Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 3-1 last night.

It wasn’t enough to keep New York’s slim postseason hopes alive as Boston beat Cleveland 5-4 minutes before the Yankees win. The Red Sox win clinched at least the AL wild-card and eliminated the Yankees from postseason contention.

Mussina (19-9), who also won 19 games with Baltimore in 1995 and 1996, will try for a career-high 20th victory when he faces Boston at Fenway Park on Sunday in the final game of the regular season.

New York shortstop Derek Jeter didn’t start because of a sore left hand, but came on as a defensive replacement in the ninth inning. This will be the first October that Jeter and the Yankees missed the playoffs in 13 years — a remarkable run, which included four World Series titles.

With his 269th career victory, Mussina moved past Jim Palmer into 33rd place on baseball’s career list. Mussina has the most wins of any pitcher never to have a 20-win season.

The right-hander allowed four hits, walked none and struck out six.

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