Yankees: Good news and bad news in contact-hitting win over Baltimore

New York Yankees, Aaron Judge
May 15, 2021; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge (99) hits a home run in the second inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees won their second consecutive game in a three-game series against the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday afternoon. Finally, their offense showed up with stature, scoring eight runs, but taking a different approach compared to their normal strategy.

Instead of hitting home runs, the Yankees utilized contact hitting to spark offensive production. Aside from a two-run home run by Aaron Judge in the second inning, the rest of the Yankees’ six scored runs were a result of good base running and hitting with runners in scoring position. That has been a weakness for the team this year, but it is a positive sign to see them take a step forward in that category.

With every passing day, the Yankees seem to gain a bit more momentum, as their pitching was once again stellar in the victory. Starting pitcher Domingo German lasted 6.0 innings, allowing four hits and just one run. The bullpen helped finish off the contest, but German produced another consistent performance, lowering his ERA on the season to 3.62. He has given up just three runs over his last 12.1 innings pitched, which is a great sign for the Yankees as they offered him a second chance after a domestic abuse case that stemmed from an incident an event hosted by CC Sabathia in 2019.

Good news and bad news for the Yankees:

While the Yankees are finally back to their winning ways, having secured six wins over the last seven games, they are dealing with a few injury issues and COVID-19 infections.

Outfielder Aaron Hicks has a torn sheath in his left wrist, which will keep them out for an extended period of time.

Losing Aaron Hicks might not have a devastating impact on the offense, considering he’s hitting just .194 and .333 slugging percentage.

“Any time you lose one of your key players, that’s a blow,’’ Aaron Boone said. “No question about it.”

Clearly, Boone views Hicks as an integral player, but the Yankees seem to be doing just fine without him. They also don’t have Giancarlo Stanton in the lineup, which is a bit more significant considering he’s hitting .282 with nine home runs this season already.

Starting first-baseman Luke Voit has been working his way back slowly, but made an impact in the win.

“I’m feeling good,’’ Voit said. “My knee feels good and I feel like I’m back, finally. … I feel 100 percent.”

Voit was responsible for two hits and two RBIs against Baltimore on Saturday, finally getting back into the groove after missing the beginning portion of the season with a torn meniscus.