After winning 13 consecutive games, the New York Yankees have lost their last three games, two coming against the Oakland Athletics and their latest against the Los Angeles Angels.
Unfortunately, the Tampa Bay Rays continue to win, putting the #1 spot in the AL East further and further away in the standings. The Bombers currently sit 7.0 games back from Tampa, and they have a long road ahead if they want to secure a guaranteed spot in the postseason. Luckily, they are 2.0 games above the Boston Red Sox in the Wild Card, which would indicate a one-game playoff series to determine who continues forward.
However, the team will be without one of their most important players, relief pitcher Zack Britton. While Britton hosted 5.89 ERA on the season, he has dealt with injury this year that has dragged him to just 18.1 innings pitched. For example, during the 2019 season, Britton pitched 61.1 innings and hosted a 1.91 ERA.
The Yankees transferred Britton to the 60-day injured list, ending his season prematurely. Britton was recommended to undergo surgery to remove bone chips in his elbow, something heâ€™s already experienced this year back in March. The Yankees still have Britton under contract next year for $14 million, so making sure heâ€™s 100% healthy is essential. Nonetheless, it is a major blow to the bullpen, especially as inconsistencies arise.
â€œIâ€™ve talked with [general manager Brian Cashman] about whatâ€™s the best thing for me to be the best version of myself for this team next year,â€™â€™ Britton said in Atlanta. â€œI just donâ€™t think this year is gonna be in play anymore, unfortunately, but that wonâ€™t be clear â€™til I speak with all the doctors.â€
Aside from the bad injury news regarding Britton, the Yankees also fell to the Angels on Monday night. By a score of 8-7, starting pitcher, Corey Kluber made his first appearance in months after fighting his way back from a shoulder injury. After pitting three scoreless innings, Kluber gave up five runs in the fourth inning, thanks to a grand slam by Jack Mayfield.
The Yankees tried their best to stay in the game, as Giancarlo Stanton picked up three RBIs on two hits, including a homer in the seventh inning to tie the game. Unfortunately, Wandy Peralta gave up a run in the eighth inning, which ended up being the difference. The Yankees desperately need to get back in the win column on Tuesday, and with Jameson Taillon on the mound, they have a good chance of changing the script.