The New York Giants will likely to a move conservative approach with Nate Solder’s $9.9 million savings

New York Giants, Nate Solder

The New York Giants will proceed toward the 2020 season without their starting offensive tackle. Veteran Nate Solder elected to opt-out of the 2020 season due to family issues, specifically in the cancer department.

Solder endured his own bout with cancer, and his child is now battling through treatments. Making the decision to opt-out was a difficult one, but at the same time, it never was. The Giants instituted their full support behind Solder, who put his family before football, as all players should.

However, the football consequences will be tough to compensate for. The Giants will now rely on fourth overall pick Andrew Thomas to lock down the left tackle position, most likely, and potentially Cameron Flemingor Nick Gates on the right side. Some might argue that Fleming should start left tackle and Thomas on the right side.

What will the New York Giants do with their new-found cash?

The Giants did save $9.9 million in cap space from Solder opting out. However, head coach Joe Judge indicated that they are not rushing to spend the money as it would roll over to the 2021 season as extra cap. Spending the money now would be a negative thing in some ways, potentially taking reps away from younger players who need development.

“We’ll always make the best decision for the team,” coach Joe Judge said on Friday. “We don’t feel right now that we have money burning a hole in our pocket. We just know there is a little bit more for us in the cap space right now.”

Nonetheless, it does offer a bit more flexibility if a player gets injured and the Giants need to make a move. They have about $16 million in cap available to spend, but with a relatively full squad, I don’t imagine the Giants will spend any lucrative money on a free agent.

Of course, the big names like Jadeveon Clowney and Logan Ryan have hit the rumor mill, as the Giants could theoretically afford them. However, there is no need to make any rash decisions.

New York Giants extend OL Nick Gates for two-years, here are the details

New York Giants, Nick Gates

The New York Giants seem to be making behind-the-scenes moves more frequently under head coach Joe Judge. After utilizing the rarely used free agent tender on Markus Golden, more off-season moves are still happening. The Giants have agreed to a two-year extension with offensive lineman Nick Gates, who started in three games in 2019.

Gates will have a base value of $6.825 million and could max out at $10.325 million, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL network.

The Giants are heading toward an interesting development on the offensive line after left tackle Solder opted out of the 2020 season. That puts more pressure on fourth overall pick Andrew Thomas to step in and fill his role immediately. However, some might argue that Cameron Fleming, who has plenty of experience at both left and right tackle, is the better option to fill-in on Daniel Jones’s blindside.

Head coach Joe Judge made it apparent that everybody will have to earn their position on the team, and that includes Thomas, who was a top-five pick from this year’s NFL draft. There are also position battles at both center and right tackle, where Gates will be competing.

The former Nebraska lineman frames his blocks well in pass protection and has strong hands and flexibility. Even against stronger pass rushers, he was able to anchor down and utilizes quick feet to recover and mirror. Playing tackle is all about angles, and Gates managed to play at a decent level when substituting for Mike Remmers last year. He doesn’t have ample experience at the position, which makes him more fit for center or guard. The Giants currently have Will Hernandez and Kevin Zeitler, so it leaves gates with only two options.

The extension is fantastic for both parties. The Giants believe he can be a starter in the NFL at a max of $5 million per season on his new deal.

New York Yankees: Good and bad pitching news ahead of Saturday’s matchup against Boston

New York Yankees, Aroldis Chapman

The New York Yankees are preparing to face off against the Boston Red Sox in the second game of a three-game series. On Friday evening, the Yankees stole the first game 5-1. Starting pitcher Jordan Montgomery was given the victory while Boston pitcher Ryan Weber was attributed the loss.

However, things weren’t all jolly and well for the Yankees, as they learn Tommy Kahnle would miss the rest of the season with Tommy John surgery. Kahnle, who pitched against the Baltimore Orioles several days ago felt arm tightness in training the next day. This subsequently lead to him getting x-rays, which have since indicated that he is likely headed toward surgery.

Prior to going down, Kahnle had pitched in just one inning, giving up one hit and working his way out of a bases-loaded jam. However, in 2019, he was stellar for the Yankees. He posted a 3.67 ERA with 88 strikeouts over 61.1 innings. His fantastic season lead to optimistic expectations for the 30-year-old arm. Losing him will be devastating to the bullpen, but the Yankees have plenty of players they can substitute him with.

Here’s a look at the New York Yankees’ bullpen arms:

Aside from Kahnle, the Yankees have Luis Avilan, Zack Britton, Chad Green, David Hale, Jonathan Holder, Jonathan Loaisiga, Nick Nelson, and Adam Ottavino. While it’s not crazy to think the Yankees could utilize Michael King in a relief setting, he’s better kept healthy as a starter.

The Yankees have plenty of players who could supplement Tommy’s loss, but he is one of their more preferred options. They will need others to step up in his absence and play above their average.

There is better news when it comes to Yankee pitching, and it comes by closer Aroldis Chapman. This will allow Britton to slide into a more relief role and allow Chapman to take over his old duties.

Chapman was the third Yankee to test positive for COVID-19 on July 11, which was the day summer camp started. The team has been more than fine in his absence, but gaining him back will prove to be a significant addition. He has been isolated in his Manhattan apartment and working out ever since.

New York Yankees Player Profiles: Masahiro Tanaka, does he still have it?

New York Yankees, Masahiro Tanaka

The New York Yankees Masahiro Tanaka was born in Itami, Hyogo Japan, on November 1, 1988. He didn’t waste much time; he started playing baseball in the first grade as a catcher in little league. He played
alongside Hayato Sakamoto, who was then the team’s ace pitcher.
They hit next to each other in the lineup.

He continued to play until he reached junior high school when he played both catcher and pitcher due to his strong throwing arm. He played for the Takarazuka Boys but was chosen to the Junior All-South Kansai team in his third year of junior high. He started solely pitching when he moved to Komazawa University in 2004.

In the US, this is like a preparatory high school. While he was there, he led his team to the 87th Championship. With this win, he was given the #1 jersey indicating that he was their ACE pitcher.

Tanaka had developed a good fastball and a hard slider. In the Summer of 2006, his school earned it’s 88th championship and earned a place in the finals. Even though he was ill, he was called in, in the third inning, and he held the opponent to 1 run while he struck out ten. His school was forced into a rematch as it went 15 innings per regulation, and they lost the rematch. But the pitching in both games was so good both pitchers were chosen to play for Japan in the United States-Japan High School Baseball Tournament. In the Japan high school draft, Tanaka was selected by many teams. The Golden Eagles won the draft and signed him to a pro contract.

Tanaka pitched well, but Tanaka got off to an utterly dominant start to the 2009 season, pitching a four-hit complete-game shutout against the Hawks in his first start on April 7. That was followed by a one-run complete game against the Marines. Tanaka had an MVP career with the Eagles and became a national hero. Still, on On September 13, 2013, Tanaka set a new NPB record with his 21st consecutive win in the 2013 season in
a 6–2 complete-game victory over the Orix Buffaloes.

Baseball scouts took notice, particularly the New York Yankees. To make a long story short. The Yankees paid the posted 20 million dollar fee to the Japanese league and signed Tanaka to a seven-year $155 million contract.

Masahiro Tanaka becomes a New York Yankee

Tanaka made his Major League debut on April 4, 2014, against the Toronto Blue Jays and gave up a home run to the first batter he faced, ex-Yankee Melky Cabrera. Tanaka would receive his first MLB win in the game, pitching seven innings with eight strikeouts in the Yankees 7–3 win against the Blue Jays.

This is the last year of Tanaka’s contract, and he has had a winning season in each of those years. His best season was 2016 when he went 14-4 for a .778 winning percentage. This past year had a bit of a rough time. The New York Yankees were turning to Masahiro Tanaka this season to take
Luis Severino’s ace role. However, Yankee fans were let down as Tanaka has was not dominant.

He finished the season with an 11-9 record and an ERA of 4.45, which doesn’t scream the dominance that he can have. His inflated ERA was due to a couple of poor outings where Tanaka didn’t survive past the first or second inning. On July 25, he gave up 7 runs in the first inning in a loss to the Red Sox. A big reason for his struggles is that his split-fingered fastball is nowhere near as effective this year as it has been in the past. Yankee hopeful love Tanaka and hope he can regain his previous dominance.

On July 4th Tanaka was hit in the head from a line drive off the bat of fellow teammate Giancarlo Stanton.  His MRIs came out negative, but he has been under concussion protocol, working his way back to his first start of the season tonight. Fans and the Yankee brass will be watching with interest tonight after Tanaka had an excellent spring training. They will be looking to see if he still has it.

Tanaka is a big-time music lover and follower of several Japanese music groups. Tanaka is married to Mai Satoda, former member and former supervisor of the idol group Country Musume and television personality. The wedding ceremony was held in Hawaii in December 2012.  The couple gave birth to a baby boy on February 15, 2016. Masahiro Tanaka will become a free agent upon the completion of this shortened baseball season.

Robert Whittaker – Jared Cannonier added to UFC 254

Earlier this week, UFC President Dana White was interviewed by ESPN and he stated that a fight between Robert Whittaker (21-5) and Jared Cannonier (13-4) would make sense.

He talked about how it’s hard to distinguish a number one contender between the two men. They both are deserving of the next title shot. Well, it’s been announced that the two men are going to fight to determine who is the number one contender.

UFC 254 will determine number one contender

It’s a quick fight announcement for the former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker. Whittaker is coming off of a close decision win over Darren Till last Saturday at UFC Fight Island 3.

Since dropping down to middleweight back in 2014, Whittaker has been at the very top. He’s gone 10-1 and captured the UFC‘s middleweight title. The only slip up came when he lost the title by knockout to Israel Adesanya at UFC 243.

Whittaker desperately wants to get that fight back. Adesanya has a tall mountain to climb in front of him at UFC 252 in Paulo Costa, but if Izzy and Whittaker both win expect the rematch in 2021.

Much like Whittaker, Cannonier has also seen a career resurgence once he changed weight classes. Cannonier suffered back-to-back losses against top light heavyweight contenders forcing him to move down to middleweight.

Once he moved down, Cannonier has looked sensational. He’s fought three times against and finished every opponent. His hit list includes David Branch, Anderson Silva, and Jack Hermansson.

I’m pumped for this fight. Both men are extremely talented and have elite striking skills. I love this fight because it will determine a true number one contender in the UFC‘s middleweight division.

Yankees: 1 big winner and 1 loser in dominant victory over Boston

New York Yankees, Aaron Judge

The Yankees had their home opener against the Boston Red Sox last night in the first game of a three-game series. New York was dominant in their performance against the Orioles in the series before and continued to play great baseball against Boston. They held the Red Sox to just one run and got their fifth win of the season. 

New York clicked on both sides of the field last night and played their best baseball of the year. So far, they are looking like the best team in the MLB and already look like their in mid-season form. Many players looked very good in the 5-1 victory over the Red Sox. 

Let’s take a look at the winners and losers from the New York Yankees’ dominant win over Boston:

LOSER: Kyle Higashioka

Gary Sanchez has looked awful so far this season and got the day off against the Red Sox. Kyle Higashioka was behind the plate and didn’t look much better. From a catching standpoint, he actually looked very good, but in the box, he didn’t look like he saw pitches very well. Now granted, he hasn’t had many at-bats leading up to the season. However, he looked very rusty. Considering the Yankees had such an excellent performance, overall, it was hard to find someone that really struggled. If you compare all of the players’ performances, it was obviously Higashioka who performed the worst.

New York Yankees Previews: Masahiro Tanaka takes on the Boston Red Sox tonight

New York Yankees, Masahiro Tanaka

Tonight the New York Yankees will again face the Boston Red Sox at Yankee Stadium.  The Yankees will start Masahiro Tanaka who will have a herculean job trying to hold down this weak Red Sox team.  Last year in three starts against the rivals, he gave up 22 earned runs.

It will be another nice night for baseball at Yankee Stadium.  It should be partly cloudy with a temperature that will remain at about 80 degrees throughout the game with low humidity.

The Yankees head into tonight’s game with a 5-1 record which in a regular-season equates to 15-3. The Boston Red Sox are 3-5 and sit at the bottom of the AL East. Yes, the bottom, below the lowly Baltimore Orioles that the Yankees swept earlier this week.  However, that being said, if the Yankees are to lose a game in this three-game series, it will be tonight due to Tanaka’s recent inability to hold down the Sox.

The Red Sox will face Tanaka tonight at 7:07 pm at Yankee Stadium. Tanaka will have to get ahead of hitters early in the game to have any chance of coming away with a win.  Last year he had three starts against the Red Sox, in those three starts he only got past the second inning once. There was a time early in his career that he was a Red Sox killer, but it hasn’t been that way in the last few years.

In Tanaka’s career, he has pitched against the Red Sox for the most innings of any opposing team. The Tampa Bay Rays come in second for most inning pitched. If Tanaka is to have any success tonight, he will have to pitch as he did in his one game against the Sox in spring training.  Then he pitched three shutout innings, did not give up a hit, didn’t issue a walk, and racked up five strikeouts. On July 4th Tanaka was hit in the head with a comebacker of the bat of Giancarlo Stanton.  He has been under concussion protocol. This will be his first start of the season.

When the New York Yankees come to the plate at the bottom of the first inning they will face right-hander Zack Godley in his second game of the season. The Red Sox looking to shore up their depleted pitching staff picked up Godley in mid-July.  His first game was in relief where he pitched four scoreless innings while striking out seven against the New York Mets on July 27th.  This will be his first start of the season against a team that has little experience facing the rightly.

Godley has never faced an imposing lineup that he will face tonight. Several of the Yankees are hot and if the Yankees win this one, the long ball will again come into play.  Aaron Judge will be looking to hit a homer to create a record hitting a home run in four consecutive games.

Prediction: Yankees 7-6.

Tomorrow night the New York Yankees will have their final game of the series with the Red Sox before traveling into the unknown with two, at the moment idle days before one game in Baltimore. If the Phillies are cleared to play, those two days may be replacement games with the Phillies. On Sunday James Paxton will take the mound against an unannounced Red Sox pitcher.

EmpireSportsMedia.com’s Columnist William Parlee is a member of the Society for American Baseball Research.  Follow me on Twitter @parleewilliam and join Yankee Fans R US!! Yankee fan group on Facebook.  And join me in the call of games in their game thread!

 

 

Five New York Jets who could make the leap into the Top 100 Players of 2021

New York Jets

NFL Network’s annual summer countdown featured no New York Jets representation, but there’s potential for some to make the leap.

Sports are slowly returning to the American consciousness. The asphalt and the links have respectively played host to NASCAR and Golf, while bubbles have been inflated to stage the NHL, NBA, and WNBA season. MLB continues to play in empty stadiums for the time being, though to say that situation is in flux would be the understatement of this chaotic year.

Yet, despite not having played a single down since Patrick Mahomes’ victorious throwaway at the end of Super Bowl LIV (which, by the way, did indeed occur in 2020) and training camp still going through medical testing, we’re still talking about NFL football.

The catalyst this time around is the full release of the Top 100 Players of 2020, the annual countdown of names determined by the votes of the players themselves. Results have annually been posted on NFL Network, with the full list unveiled in the span of a week this time by. Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson went from unranked to taking the top spot. Fellow thrower Russell Wilson was the runner-up while Mahomes came in fourth behind previous winner Aaron Donald. New Orleans receiver Michael Thomas rounded out the top five.

Alas, the metropolitan area possesses more teams than it does players in the current Top 100.

While the Giants were blessed with Saquon Barkley’s inclusion (No. 31, down 15 spots from the prior edition), the New York Jets have no current members on the prestigious list. Jamal Adams came in a No. 27 for his exploits from last season, but he, of course, has been dealt to Seattle, one of seven Seahawk representatives (tied for the most with Baltimore and New Orleans). The Jets were one of six teams without a current nominee, joining Cincinnati, Detroit, Jacksonville, Miami, and Washington in infamy.

Who are the Jets’ best hopes to ensure we’re not talking about another blank slate this time next year? ESM has five nominees…

T Mekhi Becton

Reaching the 100 after one’s rookie season isn’t impossible, evidenced by the appearances of Kyler Murray, DK Metcalf, Josh Jacobs, and Nick Bosa on this year’s edition. But doing so as an offensive lineman is particularly difficult. Candidates are unaided by flashy “fantasy football” stats, making inclusion a tough hill to climb.

If Becton is able to deliver the kick that the Jets’ offensive line needs, spark the protection revolution that a hopeful backfield requires to fulfill its potential, then he should definitely be among the top 100 this time next year.

The offensive lineman is one of the most underrated positions in football, and perhaps in all of sports entirely, with no opportunity to reach the box score except in the case of the tackle-eligible play or fumble recovery in the end zone. But they’re perhaps the most valuable member on the team, especially in this day and age of fantasy football heroics. Big plays are exciting, but they’re rendered meaningless when the thrower has no time or the runner can’t make it to the hole. It’s very telling that no Jets blocker has appeared on the list since Nick Mangold and D’Brickashaw Ferguson showed up in the inaugural edition in 2011. If Becton’s prescience finally starts to change the Jets’ offensive narrative, he should earn this special recognition.

RB Le’veon Bell

Bell went from the top five to unranked after his lost final season in Pittsburgh. Last season wasn’t enough to put him back on the list, rushing for a full-season career-low 789 yards. Since his year-long opt-out, Bell has gone on to serve as a soothing voice of reason during his time with the Jets. He reiterated his dedication to the franchise during an uncertain trade deadline last season and has since vowed to right the wrongs of his first year in green. The Jets’ offensive line renovation was an endeavor to help Bell return to form. Further fuel was added to his 2020 fire when Bell gave Jamal Adams one last parting gift in the form of a Twitter get-together that leaves the Jets potential December visit to Seattle looming larger than ever on the 2020 ledger.

The combination of new, and potentially more powerful, blockers and a quest for vengeance could make for fireworks in the Jets’ backfield. Bell has been a mainstay on the Top 100 list throughout his career. If he’s able to capture even a portion of his Pittsburgh firepower, he can definitely work his way back.

QB Sam Darnold

Darnold has become one of the most polarizing figures in both New York sports and the NFL entirely. While it’s completely fair to say that Darnold hasn’t fully reached his NFL potential, one has to analyze the hand he’s been dealt. With so much turnover in his blocking and receiving corps…Chris Herndon, Brian Winters, and Jonotthan Harrison are the rare leftovers from his rookie season…Darnold has still managed to post respectable numbers. Each of his first two seasons has ended with a hot streak, and now he might finally consistent blocking help and a long-term deep play target (Denzel Mims).

If and when we get a 2020 season, it will serve as the proverbial crucial third year of Darnold’s term as franchise quarterback, one that either extends the thrower’s stay in his locale (Jared Goff, Derek Carr, Matthew Stafford) or ends it entirely (Trent Edwards, Christian Ponder, Daunte Culpepper). Darnold probably has a little more time on his hands, considering he’s working with an all-new offense. But if he can make a leap in the third year, inclusion on the Top 100 should be no problem. It more than likely won’t be like Jackson’s dramatic ascension (going from unranked to No. 1 in the span of a year), but if he’s able to move past No. 87 Josh Allen, that’d likely be satisfying enough for a good portion of the Jets’ fanbase.

S Marcus Maye

It’ll be a big year for a 2017 Jets draftee, a member of the secondary, an SEC alum, and someone who will likely be looking for a long-term contract.

But Jamal Adams is gone. The New York secondary now belongs to Marcus Maye.

Maye is now one of the leaders of the Jets’ defense, especially a safety group that will be relying more on former Seattle reserve Bradley McDougald and third-round pick Ashtyn Davis. Maye had a solid season coming back from injury, and now has a big opportunity in a contract year to make something happen in New York. Entering his fourth season, Maye is surprisingly one of the Jets with East Rutherford/Florham Park tenure now.  If he can impress in an expanded role…well, let’s just say an appearance in the Top 100 would come in very handy when it comes to contract talks in New York or elsewhere. Maye’s rise could similar to Top 100 newcomer Budda Baker (No. 97) who has taken on a larger role in Arizona over the past two seasons since the departure of Tyrann Mathieu.

LB C.J. Mosley

If the program was called the “Top 100 Players of Last Week 1’s First Three Quarters”, Mosley might’ve topped the list. Through 45 minutes of action against the Buffalo Bills, Mosley had tallied six tackles, two pass breakups, a fumble recovery, and an interception returned for a touchdown. He served as the main catalyst behind the Jets’ 16-3 lead. Alas, Mosley’s injury the first domino to fall in the chain of events that was the Jets’ disastrous fall. With the exception of a one-game cameo in October, Mosley missed the remainder of the 2019 season, thus unable to move up the rankings after exploits in Baltimore placed him at No. 71.

As a leader in the defense, Mosley has high hopes for the upcoming campaign, which should be scary for AFC East newcomers like Cam Newton and Tua Tagovailoa. He expressed a desire to “(put) the pedal on the gas as quick as possible” during an offseason episode of the Locked on Jets Podcast.

“Last year was kind of building the foundation while we was moving,” Mosley said. “Now the foundation’s been set. We ended the season on a great note, so we’ve got to start the season fast like we ended the season, and I think if we can start early this year, through our offseason going into camp, and hit the ground running those first four games, that first month of football, we can set the pace for ourselves.”

A full season from Mosley should not only help the Jets’ defense, but resume his personal quest to climb up the Topp 100’s rankings.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

New York Giants: Joe Judge details what to expect from Xavier McKinney

New York Giants, Xavier McKinney

The New York Giants and head coach Joe Judge held their first press conference of the season on Friday afternoon, sifting through a bevy of relevant topics. Ranging from COVID-19 protocol to players opting out, Judge hit on a variety of things that we will see the NFL deal in the coming months.

Click here for a look at Judge’s top quotes and news from the press conference!

He was also asked about several players, including Aldrick Rosas and DeAndre Baker. Rosas, who was released by the team last week after reports of a drunk driving incident bubbled to the surface, is now a free agent. The Giants sign Chandler Catanzaro as a replacement, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they brought in another player to complete during training camp.

As for Baker, he was placed on the Commissioner’s Exempt List, he will continue to be paid while the league and legal system figure out his situation.

However, Judge was also asked about some of the new faces on the roster and how they can contribute. One of the players mentioned was second-round pick Xavier McKinney out of Alabama.

What can Xavier McKinney bring to the New York Giants?

Judge mentioned how versatile McKinney is and how they will begin to utilize him moving forward. He will play in many different roles, especially in match-up based situations. Depending on what team they face that week, McKinney’s role will change and adapt. That is exactly how the Giant should intend to utilize the versatile safety.

McKinney has some of the best game speed at the position coming out of the 2020 NFL draft. In 2019, McKinney racked up 95 total tackles, 5.5 for a loss, 3.0 sacks, three interceptions, and four forced fumbles. His seven total turnovers are a reason for excitement. The a free safety position has underwhelmed in recent years for Big Blue. Last year, they featured Antoine Bethea as their primary player in the deep secondary, and he struggled to lock down deep passes. He was far better against the run, but getting a faster and younger safety to take over, should prove to be an upgrade.

McKinney’s strengths range from football IQ to his quick-twitch abilities. He’s not the most refined tackler, sometimes aiming a bit high. Head coach Judge expects to utilize live tackling drills in practice to iron out poor fundamentals hopefully. If McKinney can learn how to wrap up ball carrier’s legs and tackle more efficiently in the open field, his development in the NFL could be swift and exciting.

New York Yankees Recap: The Yankees shame the Red Sox allowing only one run on the night (video)

New York Yankees, Jordan Montgomery

Last night at Yankee Stadium, the New York Yankees continued their winning ways by beating the Boston Red Sox 5-1.  The Red Sox could do nothing off the Yankees pitching. In the game, the Yankees continued the long ball with a mix of small ball as well.

Jordan Montgomery pitched five and two-thirds innings of one-run ball.  He allowed a home run in the second to Michael Chavis, and that was the only run the Boston Red Sox would score as Jordan Montgomery settled down and pitched another three scoreless innings. At 81 pitches manager, Aaron Boone took Monty out and replaced him with Chad Green, who pitched two scoreless innings. Adam Ottavino came in to close out the eighth inning, and Jonathan Holder pitched an imperfect ninth but didn’t allow a run.

At the bottom of the second inning, Gio Urshela, that went 2 for 4 last night, almost homered to the right-field wall, but it was prevented from going out by Jackie Bradley Jr. At the top of the third inning with DJ LeMahieu on first, Aaron Judge hit a big home run for the 2-1 Yankee lead, and the Yankees would not look back.

At the bottom of the fourth Gio Urshela, who almost homered in the second slammed a big solo homer off of Red Sox starter Ryan Weber ending his night for the Sox.  On the New York Yankees part, Jordan Mongomery was in control for five and two-thirds innings giving up just the one run in the third inning.

Brett Gardner, after going 0-13, walked twice in the game, and in the bottom of the eighth inning, his bat came alive in a big way homering to center with a, not in question two-run shot giving the Yankees the 5-1 lead in the game. After Montgomery left the game, Chad Green came in a pitched two dominant innings. Adam Ottavino got his out in the eight, and Jonathan Holder came in to close out the ninth for the Yankees.

Jordan Montgomery got the win, and Ryan Weber took the loss. The Yankees are now 5-1 on the young season.  Aaron Judge is on a roll hitting a homer in each of his last three games.  It’s hard not to pitch to him because the Yankees lineup is a powerhouse throughout the lineup.

The Yankees meet the Red Sox again tomorrow at the Stadium, and all eyes will be on Judge to see if he can hit another homer, making four games in a row, which he has never done before.  Masahiro Tanaka, after being hit in the head a month ago, will start tomorrow’s game for the Yankees.