The New York Yankees faced off against the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday afternoon, losing their first series of the season, dropping the finale 5–1. With Clarke Schmidt on the mound, the Yankees hoped to showcase more offensive production but only produced a single run to show for their efforts. In fact, the Yankees have only scored five runs in their last three games combined, displaying vulnerability at the bottom of the order.
This was certainly a tough watch for Yankee fans hoping to see more effort and production in the batter’s box.
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Good news and bad news from the Yankees’ loss:
Offensively, the Yankees recorded just six hits and struck out 12 times. Toronto pitcher Kevin Gausman struck out 11 batters and gave up three hits over seven earned runs. Anthony Volpe struck out three times across four at-bats, and Kyle Higashioka struck out in all three of his opportunities. This was a tough day for some of the team’s more prominent hitters, with the top four batters striking out a combined seven times.
The positive news is that Anthony Rizzo logged his fifth homer of the season, and DJ LeMahieu recorded three hits, elevating his average to .281 with a .361 OBP. As for the pitching, Schmidt had a great start but struggled down the stretch, giving up two homers in the 6th inning before being pulled. Michael King came in as relief but gave up one earned run and two hits across 1.1 innings. The team’s pitching didn’t perform well after the 5th inning, but it was a far more encouraging performance from Schmidt, who is likely headed back to the bullpen once the Yankees’ rotation gets a bit healthier.
The Clarke Schmidt situation:
Clarke Schmidt, a promising young talent, has been a topic of debate among New York Yankees fans. While some argue that he should be a starting pitcher, there is a solid case to be made that he would better serve the team as a bullpen arm.
Schmidt’s MLB statistics show that his performance in shorter outings has been more impressive. In his brief MLB career, he has demonstrated a higher strikeout rate (K/9) when pitching in relief, as opposed to starting games. This suggests that his stuff plays up in shorter stints, where he can maximize his velocity and mix of pitches to keep hitters off balance.
Furthermore, the Yankees’ current roster situation could benefit from a dominant bullpen arm. With a deep starting rotation featuring pitchers such as Gerrit Cole and Carlos Rodon, pending his return, Schmidt may struggle to find a consistent role as a starter. However, the bullpen, which has experienced some inconsistency, could greatly benefit from a high-impact arm like Schmidt’s.
The Yankees will take on the Minnesota Twins in a three-game series starting on Monday at 7:40 PM. With Jhony Brito on the mound, they will take on old friend Sonny Gray, who currently hosts a 0.82 ERA across 22 innings this season.