The word of the day is shutout. Last night the New York Yankees shut out the Baltimore Orioles 7-0. Starter Jordan Montgomery was brilliant, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton were powerful, and the New York Yankees went 3 for 6 with men in scoring position. Although everyone didn’t take part in the party, the Yankee bats came to life.
Jordan Montgomery has the best start of the season
Last night against the Baltimore Orioles, Jordan Montgomery was totally dominant. He had command of all of his pitches and put down Oriole after Oriole. He went six innings striking out seven O’s, without issuing a walk. And, of course, he did not allow an Oriole run. In tandem, Luis Cessa replaced him in the seventh inning and continued where Montgomery left off pitching two clean innings while striking out 3. To complete the excellent night, Aroldis Chapman closed out the ninth inning striking out three.
It probably shouldn’t be a surprise that Montgomery pitched so well; in his 3 spring training starts, he had a tiny ERA of 0.90 across 10 innings of work. Last year Monty didn’t have the best of seasons, going 2-3 with an ERA of 5.11 but rebound nicely in the postseason with an ERA of 2.25. His career average ERA is 4.14. “Monty” is very positive this year, two years out from his Tommy John surgery, and is poised to become an important part of the rotation, if last night’s performance is any indication he seems headed for success.
471′ Grand Slam for Giancarlo Stanton
Few baseball players hit the ball as hard as Giancarlo Stanton. Last night against the Baltimore Orioles, he showed off with the New York Yankees’ first Grand Slam of the young season. The night started with Aaron Judge hitting a cheap 340′ home run off Jorge Lopez, just over the short right-field wall. But with the bases loaded in the fifth inning and with two outs, Giancarlo Stanton walked up to the plate and slammed a homer 471′ far into the stands for the Yankees 6-0 lead.
It was reported by Michael Kay of the YES Network that the homer was off a pitch that was thrown at 92 mph by Orioles pitcher Shawn Armstrong but exited Stanton’s bat at 115.1 mph. After playing in only 18 games during the 2020 regular season, Stanton came alive in the postseason, hitting 6 home runs in just seven postseason games. Last night he had the first of many home runs to come.
Part of the secret to the New York Yankees’ success in 2021 is to keep both Judge and Stanton healthy. If they can stay on the field together, there will be no stopping the Yankees. In games that both Judge and Stanton have hit home runs, the Yankees have a record of 8-0.
The Yankees hit with men in scoring position
Yesterday I wrote an article critical of the Yankee’s ability to hit the ball. Over the last 12 games of spring training, the Yankees scored only 3.1 runs per game. In the first 3 games of the new season, they scored just 2.1 runs per game. Anyone that knows anything about baseball knows that thy kind of run production doesn’t win games.
I pointed out that this was not a new problem for the Yankees, pointing out that it happened for periods last season and in past postseasons when the championship was on the line. Last night the Yankees showed what they could do hitting, and hitting with men in scoring position. Now they have to find a way to be consistent with their hitting.
The Yankee ace Gerrit Cole will face the Baltimore Oriole’s Dean Kremer in a 6:35 pm game at Yankee Stadium tonight. Cole in his first start struck out 8 in a no-decision game. Tonight he will get his chance to get his first win of the season, hopefully, the Yankee bats will cooperate. The game will be broadcast in Baltimore and in the New York area on the YES Network.