With the game going to the top of the ninth, New York Yankees hard-throwing lefty Aroldis Chapman was called from the bullpen to get three big outs, even though it wasn’t a save situation.
One problem: he didn’t get the job done.
The Detroit Tigers scored two runs off of Chapman before the Yankees were shut down in the ninth inning, losing 3-1.
After a strikeout to John Hicks, Niko Goodrum walked, then Dustin Peterson followed with a double to score Goodrum. Chapman then retired Grayson Greiner, but gave up a single to Jordy Mercer, which scored Peterson before finally retiring the side.
You couldn’t say that the Yankees had trouble hitting with runners in scoring position because there were barely any runners in scoring position. They only had three attempts with runners on second and/or third, and converted zilch.
Their only run came off a sacrifice fly by newly recalled Clint Frazier after DJ LeMahieu singled and new Yankee Mike Tauchman hit a ground rule double down the left field line.
Tauchman got his first career Yankee hit, while back-up catcher Austin Romine and also newly recalled Tyler Wade got their first hits of 2019.
Tanaka did his part for the New York Yankees:
Masahiro Tanaka had his second start of the 2019 season, and though he allowed several well hit balls to deep in the park, he got the job done. He pitched 6 2/3 innings while giving up eight hits, allowing one run, and striking out seven.
The 1-2 punch of the splitter and the slider seemed to work well yet again for the right-hander from Hyogo, Japan, getting most of his strikeouts from it along with a few fastballs. The splitter definitely worked the very best, minimizing contact with that pitch. The hard hit balls were with the slider and the fastball. Jeimer Candelario of the Tigers hit a hard double off of a curveball, one of the few he threw all night.
So despite not having his best stuff, anytime you pitch 6 2/3 innings and only give up run, it means that you are doing something right. Another good start for the righty, I just wish there could be more offense.
The rubber match of the series will be Wednesday late-afternoon with a 4:05PM start time. Jonathan Loaisiga will take the ball against the Tigers’ Matthew Boyd. The game will be on YES Network and Fox Sports Go.