The New York Yankees picked up their second consecutive win of the 2022 regular season, taking down the Boston Red Sox with phenomenal pitching (2-1). After being knocked out of the Wild Card by Boston last year, the Yankees clearly had something to prove this week, showcasing resiliency and efficiency at all levels.
Despite a few starting pitching concerns, both Gerrit Cole and Luis Severino looked sharp for the most part despite singular innings of poor play. Cole blamed a late start to opening day for his deficiencies, while Severino gets a pass, having not started a game in over two years.
There was plenty of good news in the Yankees’ win on Saturday, starting with Luis Severino pitching three innings and striking out five batters. Severino gave up a two-run homer to Alex Verdugo in the 2nd inning but otherwise touched triple digits with his fastball and averaged out at 98 mph.
With Severino getting his first start in several years, we should be extremely optimistic about his performance as the No. 2 behind Cole. Looking at the bullpen, they strung together six consecutive innings without allowing a hit, striking out seven batters in the process.
Management deployed a fantastic strategy with their relief arms, utilizing them at the perfect time and even getting rookie Ron Marinaccio into the mix in a high leverage situation after Severino was pulled. If the bullpen can continue performing like this, the Yankees will be an incredibly difficult team to beat, especially when their slugging is up to par as well.
Both Anthony Rizzo and Giancarlo Stanton hit their second home runs of the season against Boston on Saturday, with Rizzo answering Verdugo’s two-run blast in the 4th inning. The Yankees are still heavily reliant on home runs, which has proven to be a liability in the past, but general manager Brian Cashman provided a bit more contact-hitting in the batting order with the acquisition of Isiah Kiner-Falefa. While IKF still hasn’t recorded a hit over two games, it is only a matter of time before he gets on base and starts to show his value. He recorded a .279 average last season and is currently hitting last in the batting order, which indicates how strong the Yankees lineup is.
There wasn’t too much bad news in the win over Boston, but we can look at Joey Gallo as one of the team’s more quiet contributors. Gallo struck out three times in his first game of the season against Boston but did contribute a hit and walk on Saturday. However, Gallo was thrown out at second base, trying to extend a laser single off the right-field wall.
Other than Gallo, Gleyber Torres recorded some decent contact but struck out once and failed to make an impact offensively. However, he made a tremendous diving grab at second base, showing off his defensive qualities.
Overall, this was a clean win for the Bombers despite scoring just four runs. Once some of their better contact hitters get into rhythm, they should witness an increase in offensive production.