New York Yankees: 5 Takeaways from Yankee doubleheader sweep of the Red Sox

New York Yankees, Giancarlo Stanton
May 8, 2018; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees designated hitter Giancarlo Stanton (27) watches his solo home run against the Boston Red Sox during the fourth inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees entered yesterday’s pivotal doubleheader with the Boston Red Sox with the ability to overtake the Red Sox in the AL East for the first time this season. They won both games for a sweep of the doubleheader. As a result, they took the Red Sox berth in the playoffs and are now even being 5 games behind the AL East-leading Tampa Bay Rays.

Luis Gil does it again and makes history

Luis Gil wasn’t as sharp last night as he was in his first two replacement starts for Gerrit Cole, who was previously on the Covid list. But he did pitch 4.2 innings of scoreless ball. He became the first pitcher ever in New York Yankee history to pitch 4.2 scoreless innings in each of his first three career appearances since 1893. Also, his 15.2 scoreless inning streak is now the second-longest by a Yankee pitcher in franchise history, trailing only Slow Joe Doyle back in 1906.

Gil originally called up as an emergency replacement, has made a strong case to stick around, even with the returning starters coming back into the rotation. His unflappability and swagger endears himself with Yankee fans.

Game one starter Jordan Montgomery one of those starters returning from Covid, tired during his first start. He gave up three runs but kept the Yankees in the game so they could eventually win.

The home run is king

The New York Yankees have positioned themselves as a home run hitting team. Most often, if they don’t hit home runs, they don’t win. Last night the home run ball was king as all of the runs scored were via the home run. In the second inning last night Luke Voit hit a homer to the right-field bench. Giancarlo Stanton led off the bottom by homering well (441′) into the left-field stands in the fourth inning. Those two runs were the only runs scored by either team in the game.

The first game was an unusual one that saw the Yankees claw their way to a win without hitting any home runs. Instead, they pulled off the seven-inning win with a combination of stringing hits together and running the bases well. Rougie Odor, Tyler Wade, and Andrew Velazquez went five for seven. Velazquez sparkled in the field, keeping the Sox from scoring.

The bullpen is dominant in shut out

Last night after Gil’s third successful start Wandy Peralta game in in the fifth inning with the bases loaded with Red Sox and successfully got out of the inning scoreless. Peralta also pitched a scoreless sixth. Chad Green came in in the seventh and pitched a hitless inning for his fifth save of the season.

Montgomery went 4.2 innings in game one, and Albert Abreu came in to get the final out of the fifth inning. Then entered Jonathan Loaisiga, who pitched two scoreless innings and got his fifth save of the season.

Yankees win without a closer

The New York Yankees are winning games and winning them without a permanent, dependable closer. Aroldis Chapman, with 23 saves this season, has been anything but dependable. He started the season lights out, not giving up a run in his first 18 games, but then things went south. He had four blown saves, and in most of the games the Yankees did win, Chapman turned the ninth inning into a nail-biting soap opera.

Chapman is now on the IL left shoulder inflammation. Even before Chapman went on, the IL manager Aaron Boone was pitching and choosing closer matchups. Most were with Zack Britton, but Britton has been ineffective and removed from a closing role. So since July fourth, Boone has used seven different closers. Chad Green and Jonathan Loaisiga have been the most effective.

New York Yankees go for the sweep tonight

After sweeping the doubleheader yesterday, tonight, the Yankees will go for the series sweep of the Boston Red Sox. The Yankees will have Andrew Heaney on the mound, and the Red Sox will start Nick Pivetta. Heaney, although he has a respectable 7 wins on the season since he has come to the Yankees, he has given up 15 runs in three starts, with the Yankees losing two of those starts. Xander Bogaerts has been a Heaney killer. Heaney will be on a short leash.

Heaney will the Red Sox’s Nick Pivetta, who is a rightly who is 9-5 with a 4.20 ERA and 139 strikeouts. Both DJ LeMahieu and Giancarlo Stanton have hit weel off of Pivetta. Stanton and Sanchez have hit homers off him. The game at 7:05 pm tonight will be on the YES Network, NESN, and nationally on ESPN.