TORONTO -- Were three starts enough to get Andy Pettitte postseason-ready?
"I'm ready,'' he said after being charged with three runs and allowing five hits in 52/3 innings in Saturday's 3-2 loss to the Blue Jays. "Whatever comes my way, I'm ready to do it. I'm about where I thought I'd be, which is a good spot. Hopefully, I can get my stuff together for my next start.''
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The way the AL East race is going, that very well could be a one-game playoff against the Orioles on Thursday.
But first things first.
Pettitte, though not bad, wasn't as effective as he had been in his first two starts, when he threw 11 scoreless innings. He had shut out the Blue Jays for five innings Sept. 19 in his first start since returning from a fractured left ankle.
"I didn't feel like I was in a real good rhythm,'' Pettitte said. "Just didn't have real good command of my fastball. I was able to locate it away pretty good, but just everything else wasn't quite what I wanted it to be.''
Pettitte took a 2-1 lead into the fifth, but the Blue Jays tied it on Rajai Davis' two-out infield single. He left the game with the score tied at 2-2 but was charged with the third run when Joba Chamberlain allowed Adeiny Hechavarria's two-out RBI double. It drove in Yunel Escobar, whom Pettitte walked to start the inning.
Pettitte, who gave up two hard-hit flyouts to center before Chamberlain came on -- Curtis Granderson had to make an outstanding running catch on the second one -- wasn't ready to be pulled, but he didn't second-guess Joe Girardi, either.
"I'd never want to come out of a game,'' Pettitte said. "But obviously, too, you realize that he watches you and how balls are getting hit, and I definitely was leaving some balls in the middle of the plate. But I would have loved to have stayed out there and gotten that out.''
Pettitte, who fell to 5-4 with a 2.87 ERA, threw 94 pitches (Girardi had him on a pitch count of 95).
"I feel good [physically],'' Pettitte said. "Obviously, it's a loss; you don't feel good about that. It's frustrating. Guys gave me the lead, I wasn't able to hold on to it, and it ended up being a loss for us. At this point, the stage we're in, every game we lose is frustrating, that's for sure . . . As a pitching staff, we have to make pitches and grind out there. Like I've said all along, it's a battle. What do we have, four games left? Hopefully, we can win all four.''