Was it the no-batting-practice gimmick? The scrambled batting order? The late insertion of Tino Martinez into the lineup? Or was it simply time for an underachieving veteran lineup to finally do something to take the heat off its batting coach and manager?
Perhaps all of the above apply. Or none. For whatever reason, the dormant Yankees bats -- led by Alex Rodriguez, who hit two of the team's four homers to reach No. 400 for his career -- rumbled to life on Wednesday night in a 12-3 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park.
After losing 9 of 10 games and starting this 12-game trip 1-7, the Yankees resembled the team that had won 10 straight and 16 of 18 before this swoon made George Steinbrenner, their principal owner, restless.
The Yankees had not scored this many runs in a game since May 27. And the timing was fortunate, because the Yankees (29-30) begin a three-game series Friday with St. Louis, which has the best record in the National League.
Rodriguez, who had gone 11 games without driving in a run, went 4 for 4 with four runs batted in.
He hit a two-run homer in the first off Brewers starter Chris Capuano, and No. 400 came in the eighth with reliever Jorge De La Rosa pitching.
Rodriguez, who also had a run-scoring single, pumped his right fist as the second homer cleared the right-field wall to make him the first major leaguer to hit 400 homers before his 30th birthday.