New York Yankees: 3 Major takeaways from finale loss to the Rays

New York Yankees, Michael King
Sep 27, 2019; Arlington, TX, USA; New York Yankees starting pitcher Michael King (73) throws a pitch in the eighth inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Last night the New York Yankees wanted to celebrate the cheerfulness of putting a bow on the series with the Tampa Bay Rays by completing the sweep of the series. That was not to be as the Rays pummeled the Yankees last night. The Yankees can take some solace, though; it’s the first time the Yankees have won a series against the Ray since the Rays swept a two-game series from the Yankees back on September 24-25, 2019. The Yankees’ last time they swept a series over the Rays at Tropicana Field was in April of 2015.

Taillon had command problems

Jameson Taillon just didn’t have his good stuff in the 9-1 rout of the New York Yankees. He got in immediate trouble in the first inning, giving up two runs, he gave up another two runs in the third inning, and his day was done after just 4.2 innings and 95 pitches thrown.

The odd thing about Taillon’s outing is that he had command one minute but not the next. He struck out 9 Rays on the day but didn’t have any consistency with his pitches. The Yankee’s pitching coach Matt Blake has been encouraging the Yankees’ pitchers to increase their use of the changeup, which they have been doing successfully. However, Taillon is the one pitcher that has not made that increase, and the reason is that it just isn’t very good.

Bullpen surprisingly fails big time

After Jameson Taillon gave up four runs, manager Aaron Boone turned the game over to his usually stellar bullpen. Unfortunately, last night that made things worse. Michael King has been good for the Yankees going several innings of scoreless relief; that was not the case last night. He gave up 3 runs in just 2.1 innings of work. Justin Wilson sealed the deal for the Yankees by giving up 2 runs in the ninth inning.

The Yankees still aren’t hitting

The New York Yankees are under tremendous pressure not to give up runs in games because across most of this season’s games; the Yankee hitters aren’t scoring. Under normal circumstances, if the starting pitching isn’t as good as expected, the hitters can pick it up for him by scoring runs. For the most part, this season, that is not happening. It’s been that the pitchers have made up for the poor hitting.

Last night the Yankees only had five hits in the game. Those few hits seldom win games. This has been a problem that has dogged the Yankees all season. Although the front of the lineup has improved considerably since the beginning of the season, the bottom of the lineup has been failing miserably. Last night Mike Ford, Clint Frazier, Miguel Andujar, and Brett Gardner combined for 9 strikeouts and no hits. Their combined batting average is just 104.5. This basically means the Yankees are operating with only half a lineup.

Excellent pitching in the first two games led the New York Yankees to win those games. However, based on industry norms, the Yankees shouldn’t have won those games either. In the entire three-game series, the Yankees only scored five runs.