Last night the New York Yankees had a gutsy comeback win over the Oakland Athletics. They won the game 7-5 in one of the most exciting games of the season. After four and a half innings, the Yankees were behind 4-0. After that, they clawed their way all the way back for a win in the eighth inning. What made this game so exciting was not only a comeback, but it was a total team effort. It was a win that broke the backs of the A’s, breaking their seven-game winning streak.
A pitching saga unfolded
Domingo German started yesterday’s matinee game for the Yankees after a disastrous start back on June 13, when he gave up seven runs in just 4.1 innings. For the second game in a row German was ineffective, giving up four runs in as many innings. German has been the Yankee’s second-best starter this season, but he didn’t have it in the last two starts as he continued to give up home runs. He gave up two home runs, walked two, and struck out 6 in his four innings of work.
But the pitching story yesterday was not about German; it was about the gutsy performance of Nestor Cortes Jr., who stopped the bleeding and kept the Yankees in the game. He, without a doubt, was the unsung hero of the game. Without his effort, the Yankees couldn’t have come back in the game.
After Matt Olson singled, driving in two more A’s runs in the fifth, German was pulled from the game. With men on the corners and no outs, new pitcher Nestor Cortes faced pinch hitter Laureano, who struck out, Chapman also struck out. Murphy flew out as Cortes limited the damage. He would continue to pitch for three scoreless innings, only allowing one hit and giving the Yankees time to come back for that win.
Yankees come alive with 11 hits
The New York Yankees couldn’t do much against the A’s starter Chris Bassitt. Once they got into the bullpen, the Yankees came alive with 11 hits. They got two runs off of Burch Smith and three runs off of Jesus Luzardo, who took the loss in the game. The Yankees’ power started when Gary Sanchez homered in the sixth that knocked starter Bassitt out of the game. Gio Urshela got his 9th homer of the season in the eighth, winning the game for the Yankees.
As I said earlier, it was a team effort. Clint Frazier got two doubles in the game. Judge, LeMahieu, Stanton, and Urshela all had RBI’s. After Nestor Cortes Jr.’s stellar performance, Chad Green came in and pitched a scoreless inning striking out all three batters he faced, paving the way for Aroldis Chapman’s save.
Is Gary Sanchez becoming a Yankee star again?
The is no question that Gary Sanchez has been the most maligned New York Yankee player in the last few years, causing many fans to say he should be replaced. Sanchez was once a Yankee star. In 2017 he had 33 home runs, 90 RBI’s, and batted .278. He was an All-Star, MVP candidate, and a Silver Slugger. After that performance, he was projected to be the next big Yankees star.
But, that was not to be; from that point on, his performance in front and behind the plate deteriorated until a low point last season when he hit only .147 and was mostly replaced by backup catcher Kyle Higashioka even in the postseason. No matter how bad he was, the Yankees continued to show their support for the catcher by awarding him a one-year contract, stating that he would be the starting catcher. After a couple of weeks of poor play, he again lost that position, with Higashioka catching Cole and Kluber.
This season up to two weeks ago, there was only marginally better performance as his struggles at the plate continued. But nineteen days ago, a new Gary Sanchez showed up. In his last 19 games, he has hit six home runs, appears far more comfortable at the plate, hitting an improved .229 batting average. He also, in the period, has 7 extra-base hits. Should he continue at this torrid pace, he could become the Yankees’ next big star again.