All eyes were in Arlington Friday night as the Yankees and Rangers kicked off Game 1 of the American League Championship Series.

The Yankees, who had almost a week of rest, sent their ace in CC Sabathia to square off against the Rangers lefty C.J. Wilson in Game 1.

The game quickly started in favor of the Rangers as Sabathia’s control was off from the start of the first inning.

Elvis Andrus walked to lead off the game and Michael Young singled to set up first and third with no outs.

Josh Hamilton then hit a line drive home run to right to quickly put Texas up 3-0. The Rangers fans were on their feet and going crazy following the Hamilton home run.

Sabathia quickly continued to struggle in the first inning, loading the bases for Jorge Cantu with two outs. Sabathia threw a wild pitch that Jorge Posada could not get to and went to the backstop, but Posada got the ball to Sabathia and tagged out Nelson Cruz trying to score to end a very crazy and busy first inning.

Sabathia was able to get through the second and third innings, but ran into more trouble in the fourth inning.

Young doubled to center field, scoring Matt Treanor and Andrus to make the game 5-0 in favor of the Rangers.

Sabathia only lasted four innings, allowed six hits, five runs, walked four and struck out three. In the most simple of terms, Sabathia was terrible on Friday night. He had no command of the strike zone, walked too many batters and if anything was lucky he didn’t leave the game losing at 9-0.

Could this be Texas’ night? It sure looked that way early on, especially because Wilson was pitching very well.

Wilson had the Yankees scoreless for six innings until Robinson Cano hit a solo home run to right off Wilson that made it 5-1.

Brett Gardner led off the top of the eighth inning by hitting the ball to Cantu at first. Cantu went to flip the ball to Wilson to record the out, but Gardner slid head first into first base and beat Wilson’s foot and was now on first to lead off the eighth inning.

That gutsy play by Gardner would be the turning point of the game and the spark to an eighth inning Yankees rally.

Following Gardner’s infield single, Derek Jeter doubled to right field to score Gardner and now the score was 5-2.

Jeter would be the final batter Wilson would see as Ron Washington pulled his starter from the game. Wilson pitched seven innings, allowed six hits, two runs, walked two and struck out four.

Relieving Wilson was veteran left-hander Darren Oliver, who came in and walked Nick Swisher and Mark Teixeira to load the bases for Alex Rodriguez.

Washington pulled Oliver and put in Darren O’Day to face A-Rod. On the very first pitch, A-Rod smashed the ball down the left field line for a base hit that scored Jeter and Swisher and the score was now 5-4 with nobody out.

Washington then went to left-hander Clay Rapada to face Cano, and on his very first pitch, Cano singled to center to score Teixeira and now, the game was tied at 5-5.

Derek Holland replaced Rapada on the mound and Marcus Thames singled to left to score A-Rod and now the Yankees had taken the lead 6-5.

Can you believe that? After the Yankees looked all but dead through seven innings, they strike and strike hard and now have command of the game.

Holland was able to escape the rest of the eighth with no further damage, leaving it a one-run game.

In the bottom of the eighth, Kerry Wood came in and Ian Kinsler led off with a walk.

David Murphy was up trying to look for a rally, but Wood was able to pick off Kinsler trying to lead off first. With that one simple out, any magic Texas had in them seemed to vanish. Wood finished off the rest of the eighth with no problems.

In the bottom of the ninth, Mariano Rivera came in to nail down the save for the Yankees.

Pinch hitting for Cantu, Mitch Moreland singled up the middle to start the inning.

Andrus sacrificed Moreland to second, giving long-time Ranger Young a chance to be a hero.

After a long at-bat, Young struck out for the second out of the ninth inning.

Hamilton grounded out to third to end the game and gave the Yankees a 6-5 Game 1 victory.

Dustin Moseley, who came in to pitch the sixth and seventh innings, got the win for the Yankees. Pitching in relief of Sabathia, Moseley did a great job keeping the game at 5-0 and not allowing Texas to expand their lead.

O’Day took the loss for Texas. He was one of several Texas relievers who was terrible and blew a really good game pitched by Wilson.

For about 80 percent of this game, the Yankees looked like a beaten team in danger of falling behind 1-0.

But the Yankees never gave up. They showed tremendous heart and guts on the field and came alive in that eighth inning, almost hitting and scoring at will against the Rangers bullpen.

In a game the Rangers seemed like they were six outs away from enjoying an easy victory,ends up being a heart-wrenching defeat.

Game two will be on Saturday and will have Phil Hughes going for the Yankees to send it 2-0 back to the Bronx, while the Rangers will have Colby Lewis trying to split the series before heading to New York.

Game One was a huge victory for the Yankees that might end up dictating how this series ends up turning out.

Four down, seven to go until No. 28 for Yankees Universe.

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