New York Yankees: 3 Takeaways from Yankees comeback win over the Twins

New York Yankees, Gary Sanchez

Yesterday afternoon, the New York Yankees had a makeup game with the Minnesota Twins caused by a rainout at Yankee Stadium on August 22. After winning only one game of a three-game set with the New York Mets, the Yankees were hoping to win after they moved out of a wild card berth. The Yankees got their win, besting the Twins 6-5.

Luis Gil gives up four, but the Yankees win

Luis Gil, in this season, has gotten to live his dream. When Cory Kluber went down with shoulder problems, Gil and Nestor Cortes Jr. started games for the Yankees. Gil was called up from Scranton Wilkes/Barre on August 3 to start a game against the Baltimore Orioles. He allowed only 4 hits, 2 hits against the Mariners, 3 hits against the Red Sox, 1 hit against the Blue Jays, none for extra bases. He earned the title of pitching sensation.

Yesterday he proved he is indeed human. He gave up two long balls for 4 RBIs in the very first inning of the Twins game. But the young man remained calm and gave the Yankees 6 innings, throwing 102 pitches while giving up just one more run and striking out 8 Twins batters. With the game tied at 5, closer Aroldis Chapman held the game at 5. The Yankees would have a walk-off win in the 10th inning when Gary Sanchez lined down the left-field line, scoring ghost runner Gleyber Torres.

Aaron Judge has a storybook moment

Aaron Judge, in his career, has drawn comparisons to the Hall of Famer and 20-year veteran Yankee Derek Jeter. Jeter was known for rising to the occasion at the most important times. Aaron Judge had his Jeter moment last night. After being behind by five runs, the Yankees began to claw their way back as the crowd became energized for the first time in the game. In the eighth inning, Anthony Rizzo pinch-hitting Wade walked with the Yankees still behind by 3 runs. Gary Sanchez pinch-hitting for Higashioka flew out to left. LeMahieu flew out to center. Gardner walked.

With Judge coming to the plate, the Twins turned to closer Alex Colome. Judge represented the tying run at the plate. You could feel the electricity in the stands as fans hoped for a big moment. Just like in a storybook, Judge homered to right-center to tie the game at 5. Gary Sanchez would seal the deal for the Yankees when he drove in the ghost-running Gleyber Torres in the 10th inning for the walk-off win. It was the first time the Yankees have come back from a five-run deficit this season.

Yankees new infield look

The New York Yankees have finally changed the look of their infield. Yesterday saw Gleyber Torres move to second base his natural position. Management apparently felt that the stress and errors being made by Torres might have been causing his poor plate performance. However, earlier in the season, it was proven that second baseman DJ LeMahieu played just as well at third base. Additionally, when Torres was on the IL, that third baseman Gio Urshela performed well as a shortstop. So to put Torres at second, those corresponding moves were also made.

Lindsey Adler of The Athletic reported that manager Aaron Boone said that the infield would remain this way for the duration of the season.

Notes: The New York Yankees will start a short three-game road trip today when they play the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards in Baltimore. Yankee ace Gerrit Cole will be on the mound for the Yankees and Alexander Wells for the Orioles. The game will be at 7:05 pm EDT and televised on the YES Network and MASN in Baltimore.

 

New York Yankees Recap: Judge and the Yankees win with a storybook ending

New York Yankees, Aaron Judge

Today was supposed to be a day off for the New York Yankees, but a rainout on August 22nd facilitated today’s makeup game with the Minnesota Twins. The Yankees are coming off a loss to the New York Mets and going 3-12 in their last 15 games. The Twins were coming off a lost series with the Kansas City Royals.  Luis Gil was on the mound for the Yankees and John Gant for the Twins. In a game that went 10 innings, the Yankees got the walk-off 6-5 win.

Luis Arraez singled to right. Byron Boxton flew out to left. Jorge Polanco homered to right center, bring in Arraez. Josh Donaldson walked. Max Kepler struck out for the second out of the inning. Miguel Sano followed by getting the second run homer of the inning. Rob Refsnyder struck out. But Gil gave up four runs in the half. DJ LeMahieu led off for the Yankees and ground out to third base. Brett Gardner ground out to short. Aaron Judge walked. After the Judge walk, starter Gant was removed from the game with some type of injury; Luke Farrell replaced him. Giancarlo Stanton ground out to third to end the inning. Later in the game, Gants problem was determined to be a lower back strain.  Minnesota Twins 4 Yankees 0.

Gil faced Ryan Jeffers leading off the second inning; he fouled out to Luke Voit. Andrelton Simmons struck out swinging. Arraez flew out to Gallo as Gil rebounded for a 1-2-3 second. At the bottom, Joey Gallo struck out swinging. Luke Voit walked. Gleyber Torres ground into a double play to end the scoreless half.  Twins 4 Yankees 0.

Buxton led the third inning, who hit the Twin’s third home run, making this the ninth straight game that the Yankees have given up 5 or more runs since 1940. Polanco flew out to left. Kepler flew out to Gardner in center. At the bottom, Tyler Wade flew out to center. Kyle Higashioka struck out swinging. Finally, LeMahieu flew out to the right-field wall. Twins 5 Yankees 0.

Miguel Sano led off the fourth inning by going down on strikes. Refsnyder struck out swinging. Jeffers struck out as Gil struck out the side. At the bottom, Gardner ground out to short. Judge had a towering fly out to center. Stanton copied with the exact same out. Twins 5 New York Yankees 0.

Simmons led the fifth inning, who struck out for Gil’s fourth strikeout in a row. Arraez ground out to Wade at short. Buxton singled past third. Polanco flew out to Gallo in shallow left. Joey Gallo led off the bottom by laying down a beautiful bunt for a single. Voit faced new pitcher Kyle Barraclough and hit into a 5-4-3 double play. Torres flew out to center. Twins 5 Yankees 0.

Josh Donaldson led off the sixth and ground out to Wade at short. Kepler singled in front of Judge in right. Sano singled to left. Refsnyder struck out swinging. Jeffers flew out to center. Tyler Wade led the bottom of the frame, who worked a walk to lead off. Wade stole second. Higashioka flew out to right with Wade tagging and easily going to third base. LeMahieu got a sac fly to the right-field wall, Kepler made a great play, but Wade scored on the play.  Wade’s base running excels again. Gardner doubled up the middle. That ended the day for Barraclough. He was replaced by Tyler Duffy facing Aaron Judge, who rolled one to short to end the inning stranding Gardner. Mets 5 Yankees 1.

Andrelton Simmons led off the seventh inning against new Yankee pitcher Andrew Heaney; he tapped back to Heaney. Simmons ground out to Wade. Buxton went down swinging. At the bottom of the frame, Stanton struck out swinging. Gallo homered will into the bleachers in right-center. Voit ground out to short. Torres ground out to third. Mets 5 New York Yankees 2.

Polanco led off the eight with a soft bunt, Higashioka retired him. Donaldson was called out on strikes. Kepler walked. Sano singled to left. Refsnyder faced the new Yankee pitcher Albert Abreu with two on and two outs and ground out to third. The bottom was led off by Anthony Rizzo pinch-hitting for Wade and walked. Gary Sanchez pinch-hitting for Higashioka flew out to left. LeMahieu flew out to center. Gardner walked. With Judge coming to the plate, the Twins turned to closer Alex Colome. Judge as the tying run at the plate homered to right-center to tie the game at 5. Stanton went down swinging. New York Yankees 5 Minnesota Twins 5.

The New York Yankees trusted Aroldis Chapman to hold the game at 5. Jeffers went down looking. Simmons went down swinging. Arraez hit a two-out double to left. Buxton walked. Polanco flew out to Gardner to end the Twin’s threat. At the bottom with a chance to win it for the Yankees, Joey Gallo who already homered in the game went down swinging. Voit also went down swinging. Torres went down swinging, bringing in free baseball, a nail-biting 10th inning. The game tied at 5.

The tenth inning was led off by Donaldson with ghost runner Polanco on second and Clay Holmes on the mound for the Yankees. Donaldson struck out. Kepler tapped back to Holmes for the second out. Sano flew out to Judge to end the half. At the bottom with Torres as the ghost runner Urshela struck out. Sanchez powered one to left to win it for the Yankees in the 10th.

The final score was the New York Yankees 6, the Minnesota Twins 5. The winning pitcher was Clay Holmes and the loser was Ralph Garza Jr.  Judge’s three-run homer makes this one a storybook, Derek Jeter-like win.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yankees: Latest injury update on Aaron Judge

New York Yankees, Aaron Judge

So far, we can firmly say that the New York Yankees have had the luxury to enjoy a relatively healthy season from their star player, Aaron Judge. He has taken part in 129 games and is already up to 552 plate appearances. He has missed some contests here and there, in part because the organization has made it a priority to keep him in one piece.

However, the fact that Yankees’ manager Aaron Boone had to remove his star outfielder in the third inning of Sunday’s game against the Mets raises concerns in the entire organization. Judge was taken out with what was described as “dizziness,” per MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch.

Judge seems to be feeling better already, but the Yankees will monitor his status ahead of Monday’s game against the Minnesota Twins.

“I just spoke with him and he’s doing pretty good, so hopefully we’ll be in a good spot for [Monday],” Boone said.

The Yankees need their star to keep pushing for the postseason

Boone explained that Judge, who is carrying the Yankees offensively with a .293/.377/.535 line, 32 home runs, and 79 RBI, started experiencing the aforementioned dizziness during his first at-bat of the game, against Mets’ starter Carlos Carrasco. In fact, he received medical attention.

“After the first pitch of his first at-bat, he just got a little bit dizzy,” Boone said. “It lasted for a little bit.”

After striking out twice against Carrasco, the Yankees took him out in the third frame and replaced him with Brett Gardner in center.

Judge was the Yankees’ hero on Saturday’s 8-7 victory against their crosstown rivals, smashing two home runs.

Hopefully he can return to the field as soon as today and keep building on an impressive campaign fueled by improved health and durability. The Yankees, currently out of a postseason spot after Sunday’s loss, need his contributions to stay afloat and keep fighting.

New York Yankees: 3 Takeaways from the Yankee’s return to winning

New York Yankees, Kyle Higashioka

It’s just one game, but last night the New York Yankees returned to their winning ways, giving glimpses of the 13 game winning streak. From July 4th to the end of August, the Yankees won more games than any baseball team. But then, unexplainably, they just as quickly returned to the team that played the first half of the season, losing 8 games and playing and pitching poorly. But last night, with new urgency, the team rose to the occasion and started what may be another winning streak. It wasn’t easy, but the Yankees pulled out an 8-7 win over their crosstown rival New York Mets.

It was a bit of a roller coaster event in a day and night that baseball, particularly in New York, remembering those lost in the 9/11 attacks on our country. There were ceremonies at Citi Field, and the players of both teams wore FDNY ball caps. In the second inning, the Yankees burst out of the doldrums scoring five runs and looking like they were going to have a laugher. But the Mets clawed back to lead at one point, but the Yankees answered with 3 runs in the eighth for a lead that would hold.

Corey Kluber continues to build for the postseason

Corey Kluber, who had been on the IL for three months, had his third start since his return. It wasn’t always pretty, but it was one more step to him returning to form that saw him pitch the Yankee’s only no-hitter this season.

Kluber went four innings striking out six Mets hitters but giving up four earned runs. However, he showed signs of better control and poise on the mound. Kluber pitched a scoreless first. After the Yankees put five runs on the board in the second. At the bottom, Kluber issued a walk to Javier Baez walked. Jeff McNeil struck out, but Baez stole second. Kevin Pillar got an RBI double driving in the lead-off walk. James McCann tripled driving in Pillar. Taijuan Walker singled, driving Pillar. Villar struck out swinging. Lindor ground out to second. New York Yankees 5 New York Mets 3. Kluber gave up another run in the third inning, a Baez homer.

Lucas Luetge, Chad Green, and Clay Holmes in relief of Kluber, all gave up a run in their inning. Albert Abreu although waking two, didn’t give up a run in the eighth. Aroldis Chapman walked one, gave up a hit, but preserved the Yankee win, getting his 26th save of the season.

The home run is again king

It is often said that when the New York Yankees homer, they win games. It certainly was true last night. Of the 8 runs scored, 7 were scored off the home run. Kyle Higashioka homered driving in two. Brett Gardner homered driving in two. Aaron Judge hit two homers in the game, scoring three.

A tail of two catchers

There are glaring differences in the Yankees’ two catchers. Last night Kyle Higashioka made some excellent plays and called a good game. He also hit a 2 run homer in the second inning. Unfortunately, this was in comparison to Gary Sanchez’s passed balls and boneheaded play at home plate. In the first game that the Yankees lost Sanchez backed off the home plate to allow a run scored instead of blocking the plate.

Higashioka often doesn’t get the praise he deserves. “Higgy” is a professional behind the plate that calls great games and seldom makes errors. He, for the most part, is Gerrit Cole and Cory Kluber’s personal catcher. But still, he doesn’t get a lot of playing time.

Those who support the idea that Sanchez is the Yankees’ catcher of the future always say that, yes, Higashioka is a good catcher, but he is not the power hitter that Sanchez is. If you look a little deeper, that is not true; the fact is that Higashioka is right up there with the best Yankee home run hitters considering at-bats this season. He has 10 long balls in 58 games. Sanchez has 21 in 101 games. Kyle’s drive-in rate is almost identical to Sanchez.  Higgy leads the AL in range factor (putouts + assist per games played).

Except for a few, catchers are notoriously poor hitters with low batting averages and don’t run the bases well. The whole point of this conversation is that Kyle Higasioka is well-focused and is a much better player than many fans would think.  He could be even better if he had more playing time.

New York Yankees Recap: Yankees get a big win in the 9th to end the skid

New York Yankees, Aaron Judge

Tonight was the second game of a three-game set between the New York Yankees and the crosstown New York Mets. After losing seven consecutive games, the Yankees hoped to preserve their first series win with a win tonight after losing four in a row. The Yankees sent Corey Kluber to the mound to face Taijuan Walker, hoping to finally right the ship. Putting sloppy play and lack of urgency behind them, they hoped to turn a new leaf and show they still hoped for a wild card berth. It was a squeaker but the Yankees pulled off the 8-7 win.

Taijuan Walker, who was once a Yankee consideration, took to the mound against DJ LeMahieu, who had a leadoff walk. Brett Gardner flew out to center. Aaron Judge struck out swinging. Then, Giancarlo Stanton singled up the middle. Anthony Rizzo tapped back to Walker for the final out. At the bottom, Jonathan Villar against Corey Kluber struck out. Francisco Lindor flew out to Stanton in left field. Michael Conforto singled in front of Judge in right field. Pete Alonso struck out to end the inning. No score.

Gleyber Torres led off the second inning by singling to left field. Gio Urshela was retired on a line drive to first. Kyle Higashioka got a two-run homer to the left-field stands for his 10th of the season. Corey Kluber ground out to first. LeMahieu singled to right. Brett Gardner got a two-run homer to center. Aaron Judge got the third homer of the inning. Giancarlo Stanton ground out to short to end the half, but the Yankees picked up five runs. At the bottom, Javier Baez walked. Jeff McNeil struck out, but Baez stole second. Kevin Pillar got an RBI double driving in the lead-off walk. James McCann tripled driving in Pillar. Taijuan Walker singled, driving Pillar. Villar struck out swinging. Lindor ground out to second. New York Yankees 5 New York Mets 3.

The third inning was led off by Rizzo, who ground out to first. Torres struck out looking. Gio Urshela struck out to end the half. At the bottom, Conforto struck out swinging. Alonso ground out to short. Baez homered to the left-field stands. McNeil ground out to second, but the Mets got another run. New York Yankees 5 New York Mets 4.

Kyle Higashioka led off the fourth inning by striking out. Kluber struck out. LeMahieu struck out to strike out the side. At the bottom, Pillar led off by striking out swinging. McCann walked. Walker bunted and was out, but the runner moved up. Villar hit a long one, but it was coraled by Judge to end the inning. Yankees 5 Mets 4.

The fifth inning was led off by Brett Gardner, who struck out. Judge ground out, and Stanton struck out. In the bottom, Lindor, against new Yankee pitcher Lucas Luetge struck out. Conforto singled to left. Alonso flew out to Judge in right. Baez lined out to third. Yankees 5 Mets 4.

Anthony Rizzo led off the sixth inning by grounding out for the eleventh put down by Walker. Torres flew out to the right-field wall. Urshela struck out. At the bottom, Mc Neil walked, with Pillar coming up, Boone brought in Chad Green. Pillar, after a delay due to balls on the field, struck out. McCann hit a homer to left, giving the Mets the one-run lead. Dominic Smith pinch-hitting for the pitcher walked.  Villar struck out. Lindor flew out to Rizzo in foul territory. Mets 6 Yankees 5.

Higashioka led off the seventh inning and lined out to short. Tyler Wade pinch-hitting struck out upstairs. LeMahieu ground out. In remembrance of 9-11, the Mets had a moving rendition of “‘God Bless American.” At the bottom, Conforto went down against Clay Holmes. Alonso fouled one off his foot, delaying the game a bit, but then struck out. Baez singled on review. McNeil singled to left with Baez going to third. Pillar got a base hit to left driving in Baez. McCann ground out to short to end the inning, but the Mets tacked on another run. Mets 7 Yankees 5.

Brett Gardner led off the eighth by singling to center. Judge hit a two-run homer into the left-field stands to tie the game, his second long ball of the game. Stanton singled to right. Velazquez replaced Stanton as a pinch-runner. Rizzo faced the new Met’s pitcher Aaron Loup and flew out to right. Torres sent a rocket to Lindor that he couldn’t handle. Urshela was pinch-hit by Luke Voit, who singled to left on a failed double play by Baez as he airmailed one past first with Velazquez scoring. Higgy struck out, but the Yankees took the lead in the game. At the bottom, Guillaume pinch-hitting with Albert Abreu on the mound ground out to second. Villar ground out to Rizzo. Lindor walked. Conforto walked. Alonso flew out to Gardner in center to preserve the Yankee lead. New York Yankees 8 the Mets 7.

The ninth inning was led off by Tyler Wade, who ground out to second. LeMahieu ground out to second. Gardner struck out. At the bottom of the ninth Yankee closer, Aroldis Chapman came to the mound to face Javier Baez, who lined out on a Judge diving catch. JD Davis pinch-hitting for  McNeil hit a ground-rule double that bounced into the right-field stands. Pillar was out at first with a magnificent play by Higashioka. Davis went to third. McCann flew out to Judge in right field to end the Yankees slide.

The final score was the New York Yankees 8 and the New York Mets 7. The winning pitcher was Clay Holmes the loser was Trevor May. The save went to Aroldis Chapman (26).

 

 

 

 

 

New York Yankees: 3 Major takeaways from Yankees 4th consecutive loss

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres

After three consecutive losses, the New York Yankees entered last night’s game with the hope of righting the ship with ace Gerrit Cole on the mound. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen as the Yankees slipped another game behind in the AL East when they lost their second game against the Toronto Blue Jays. What was even worse, Cole left the game injured. As a result, the Yankees lost the game 5-1.

Gerrit Cole leaves the game with an injury

The New York Yankees tentative pitching situation may have just gotten worse. The Yankees had had a questionable pitching outlook from the beginning of the season when they hired two pitchers for their starting rotation that hadn’t pitched in nearly two years. That has gone pretty well, except for a few bumps along the way. Jameson Taillon started slow but, as time passed, became one of the Yankee’s best pitchers. In addition, the Corey Kluber experiment didn’t go well, with him going to the IL for three months.

The bullpen started as one of the best in baseball, but as the season progressed, they lost members, and the remaining arms tired out. Nevertheless, the Yankees could count on ace Gerrit Cole, but now even that is in question. Cole pulled himself out of a game last night against the Toronto Blue Jays in the fourth inning. It was not immediately clear what the problem was. But after his removal, a few innings later, the Yankees announced that he had left the game with left hamstring tightness. So this morning should be telling with just how impactful this will be for the Yankees and their postseason race.

After the game in an interview, Cole did not give any assurances other than we will have to wait and see how this unfolds in the next 24 to 36 hours. After a pitch in the fourth inning, Cole felt something and signaled to the dugout to come out to the mound. Cole reminded questioners that this is not the first time this has happened. “it’s one of those things you go through; hopefully, I will not miss a start.” Cole stated that he took himself out of the game to avoid further injury. Manager Boone was asked if an MRI was ordered, he said no, we would have to see how he is in the morning.

If Cole only misses one start because of needing a little more rest, that will be the upside. However, if the situation is more problematic, it could be devastating for the Yankees and their hope of postseason play.

The Yankees continue the slide as division is slipping away

For a short time after a languid start to the season, things looked pretty rosy for the Yankees as they became the winningest team in baseball, even winning 13 games in a row. But after losing 4 straight, things have turned from joist to worrisome. With only 24 games to go, the Yankees have slipped to 9.5 games behind the AL East Tampa Bay Rays and only one-half game ahead of the Boston Red Sox.

So what’s the problem? The Yankees pitching hasn’t been as good, and the bullpen is horribly overworked. That would be bad enough, but the Yankees have returned to the team that before the All-Star break just not hitting the ball. During the recent skid, the Yankees have not hit an extra-base hit since Sunday. The Yankees have only scored one run in the last 21 innings. It’s the first time since 1962 that the Yankees have not hit an extra-base hit in consecutive games.

It is often said that “how Aaron Judge goes, so do the Yankees.” Judge has gone 0-4 in the Yankees last four games. For the most part, Judge has carried the team throughout the season and now needs his teammates to pick him up, but that is not happening. The Yankees are now 2-8 in their last ten games and are in danger of losing home-field advantage in a wild card game if they reach it at all.

Two big cogs missing as the train stalls

The train had left the station, but some key players were not onboard. The entire team is not hitting, but there are two glaring deficiencies. First, Joey Gallo and Gleyber Torres are missing in action and taking up space in the once-powerful lineup.

Just before the trade deadline, the New York Yankees picked up Joey Gallo from the Texas Rangers. They knew at the time they would be getting a guy that strikes out a lot but is a home run powerhouse and had a high on-base percentage. But, for the most part, that has not happened. During August, he had only 15 hits. In September, only 1 hit in 19 at-bats, a home run. Also, he has only 3 walks over the span.

After the arrival of Andrew Velazquez and his excellent defense at short, and the spark he added to the team, many Yankee fans weren’t thrilled when Gleyber Torres returned off the IL. Torres for September has only 3 hits, none for extra bases. No home runs and never walking. He also has a career-high error number. Since his return, he has had 2 errors and one bad throw that was not labeled an error but may have cost the Yankees a game.

The bottom line in all of this is that the Yankees will have to take a closer look at both of these players. Using Andrew Velazquez more at short may be part of the answer. Another move the Yankees should make is moving Gallo out of the number two or three slots in the lineup. If these two players continue as they have in the last several games, being in any postseason lineup is in question.

 

 

 

Yankees News, 9/4: Gio Urshela escapes injury, Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton power Yanks past Baltimore

gio urshela, yankees

The New York Yankees escaped Friday’s game against the Baltimore orioles with a victory in 11 innings. With Baltimore scoring in the top of the 10th, the Bombers bounced right back, with DJ LeMahieu hitting a single to right field, driving in Tyler Wade from second base.

Tying up the ball game, the Yankees recorded a double play in the top of the 11th as Ryan Mountcastle had a big lead off second base in a line drive to shortstop to end the game. However, this was a battle for a team that should’ve easily beaten a poor Baltimore squad. Thankfully, the pairing of Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton once again lifted the Yanks. They combined for three hits and two RBIs, including Stanton’s walk-off single that drove Judge in from second base.

While manager Aaron Boone will be happy about the win, the Yankees turn around on Saturday afternoon with Jordan Montgomery on the mound. Baltimore will feature Chris Ellis as the starter. He has only pitched 11.2 innings this year — the Yankees have a great opportunity to gain some essential momentum as the regular season starts to wind down to an end.

Luckily, the Bombers escaped a potentially serious injury with Gio Urshela, after falling on his hand against the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday. Urshela enjoyed negative MRI results, indicating he will be day-to-day in his return to the top team.

“Not much there, so that was encouraging,” Boone said before Friday’s win over Baltimore.

Urshela has missed a bit of time this season, playing in just 90 games. He’s hitting .263 with 11 homers and 41 RBIs, representing one of the Yankees’ most consistent hitters and best defensive players. In the meantime, Rougned Odor has featured on the hot corner as a supplement, but the team is patiently waiting to the return of Gio, who has the spot all but locked down.

New York Yankees: Takeaways from the Yankees struggle to win over the O’s (video)

New York Yankees, Giancarlo Stanton

After a disappointing road trip when the New York Yankees went 5-4 and a day off yesterday, they entered a 3 game series with the Baltimore Orioles last night. With their race to the postseason in jeopardy, the Yankees should win if not sweep a series against a team that will lose 110 games this season. In-game one, the Yankees sent Nestor Cortes Jr. to the mound to face the Orioles, John Means. In a game that should have been won easily, it went into the eleventh inning with Giancarlo Stanton walking off Aaron Judge for the Yankee 4-3 win.

A struggle to beat the worst team in baseball

Last night’s win over the Orioles in the eleventh inning was a joyful event worth celebrating on the field as the Yankees pulled out a walk-off win in the eleventh inning. But looking deeper into the win, the Yankees should be concerned, very concerned. The New York Yankees aren’t just any team; they are a team that was fighting for a win in the AL East, that is now fighting to hold onto a wild card berth just 1 1/2 games ahead of the Red Sox.

The bottom line in all of this is that the Yankees must dominate teams they should win over. The Texas Rangers, and yes, the Baltimore Orioles. The Orioles are on pace to lose 110 games or more this season. The Yankees have to be more consistent and sweep these teams. For most of the season, the Yankees have blown open games or have gone nearly hitless. Those gone hitless games are why the Yankees are in this desperate situation. Last night against the worst team in baseball, they produced only 3 hits off starter John Means.

You may say, yes, but he is the Oriole’s ace, that’s true, but he is an ace with a losing record. In the next four innings off of three relievers, they could only muster up another hit. The Yankees must do better than this if they want to advance in the postseason, or it will be just another Yankee failed season.

Nestor Cortes Jr. continues to be nasty

One of the brightest memories of this season will arise out of hardship; two-time Cy Young Award winner Cory Kluber went on the IL for 3 months suffering from a shoulder strain. Enter Nestor Cortes Jr., a reliever with an ERA of 11.5 in the first two years of his professional career with the Seattle Mariners and the Baltimore Orioles. General manager Brian Cashman saw something in Cortes and signed him to a minor league contract. The rest is history. Learn more here.

When Kluber went onto the IL, the New York Yankees looked for help; it came in the form of Nestor Cortes Jr. The reliever turned starter has been a Godsend for the Yankees. Although his win-loss record may not be impressive, he has kept the Yankees in the game in seven of his eight starts. He has allowed only 13 runs in those eight starts. Last night was one of his best outings, pitching into the sixth inning only giving up one earned run while striking out seven.

Giancarlo Stanton, the Yankee’s powerhouse

Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton will fight it out for the New York Yankees named MVP this season, but this piece is not about that; it’s about Stanton’s power. No major league hitter hits the ball harder than Giancarlo Stanton. On October 1, 2017, Stanton had a 122.2 mph single off the Braves’ Max Fried shocking the baseball world with his exit velocity off the bat.

His time with the Yankees may not have been what Yankee fans hoped for, but something that never left him was his power. Through no fault of his own, Stanton has been riddled with injuries during his Yankee career, but this is 2021, a season that he has been mostly healthy and is showing signs of his 2017 NL MVP season. He has hit the Yankee’s eight most powerful hits of the season. He hit a grand slam off the Orioles that exited his bat at 115.1 mph earlier in the season. According to Bryan Hock against the Royals, he duplicated the 2017 feat hitting a ball 122.2 mph for his 2021 record. Stanton owns the record for the three hardest hits in baseball and the eight hardest-hit balls of 2021.

Last night  Stanton blasted a 424′ homer in the fourth to left field off of John Means. But the highlight of the night was in the eleventh inning with Aaron Judge on base. Stanton hit his second hardest (121.1 mph) hit of the season, a single driving-in Judge for the Yankees walk-off win.  It was the hardest walk-off hit since Statcast kept records in 2015.

New York Yankees Recap: Stanton walked off Judge in the eleventh for the Yankee win

After a disappointing road trip when the New York Yankees went 5-4 and a day off yesterday, tonight they entered a 3 game series with the Baltimore Orioles. With their race to the postseason in jeopardy, the Yankees should win if not sweep a series against a team that will lose 110 games this season. In game one, the Yankees sent Nestor Cortes Jr. to the mound to face the Orioles, John Means. In a game that should have been won easily, it went into the eleventh inning with Giancarlo Stanton walking off Aaron Judge for the Yankee 4-3 win.

Leading off the first inning was the O’s Cedric Mullins, who against Cortes, flew out to Gallo in left. Ryan Mountcastle flew out to Judge in centerfield. Austin Hays went down on strikes for a 1-2-3 inning for Cortes. At the bottom, DJ LeMahiew faced the O’s John Means and ground out to third. Joey Gallo walked. Aaron Judge, who hit over .500 during the road trip, struck out swinging. Giancarlo Stanton went down on strikes to end the scoreless inning.

The top of the second was led off by Trey Mancini, who singled up the middle. Ramon Urias popped out to LeMahieu on the right side. Anthony Santander popped out to catcher Sanchez. Jorge Mateo went down on strike. In the bottom, Anthony Rizzo flew out to the warning track in centerfield. Luke Voit went down looking. Gleyber Torres, in his first at-bat since going on the IL with a thumb strain, struck out. No score.

Jahmai Jones led off the third inning by going down on strikes. Austin Wynns singled in front of Stanton in the right field. Mullins went down on strikes. Mountcastle got the third strikeout of the inning. At the bottom, Rougie Odor led off by striking out. Gary Sanchez ground out to third base. LeMahieu flew out to center for another scoreless inning.

The fourth inning was led off by Hays, who flew out to Stanton in right. Mancini went down on another four-seamer from Cortes. Urias walked. Santander singled, moving Urias to second. Mateo ground out to Odor to end the inning. At the bottom, Gallo led off by going down swinging. Judge flew out in front of the right-field wall. Stanton homered to right (424′). Rizzo followed with a long double to center field. Voit ground out to end the inning. Means had not allowed a Yankee hit until Stanton’s home run. New York Yankees 1 O’s 0.

Jones led off the fifth inning by striking out swinging. Wynn flew out to Gallo in left. Mullins ground out to first with an assist from Cortes. At the bottom, Torres flew out to the warning track in right-center. Odor worked a walk. Sanchez singled with Odor taking third. LeMahieu with men on the corners and one out had a sac fly driving in Odor from third. Gallo struck out, but the Yankees tacked on another run. New York Yankees 2 O’s 0.

The sixth inning was led off by Mountcastle, who walked. Hays hit into a double play. Mancini put the Orioles on the board with a homer off the second deck facing in left, and that was the end of the night for Cortes Jr. Jonathan Loaisiga came in to face Urias, who went down on Loaisiga’s 11th pitch. Aaron Judge led off the bottom by doubling to left. Stanton flew out to shallow left. Rizzo walked. Voit with two on and one out went down looking. Torres flew out deep to center. New York Yankees 2 Baltimore Orioles 1.

Santander led off the seventh inning and ground out to first. Mateo just homered to the left to tie the game up at 2. Stewart pinch-hitting ground out. Wynns flew out to Judge to end the inning. At the bottom, Odor went down on strikes. Sanchez ground out to third. LeMahieu tapped out in front of the plate to end the inning. Yankees 2 Orioles 2.

The eighth inning was led off by Mullins, who ground out to left. Mountcastle ground out to Torres at short. Hays hit a double to left-center. Mancini was intentionally walked. Urias struck out swinging. At the bottom, Gallo struck out. Judge reached on an E6 at short. Stanton flew out to center. Rizzo struck out swinging after putting one into the second deck just foul. Yankees 2 Orioles 2.

The ninth inning saw closer Aroldis Chapman on the mound facing Santander, who went down strikes that David Cone called a forkball. Mateo walked.  Kelvin Gutierrez pinch-hitting went down on strikes. Wynns struck out swinging to end the half, leaving a walk-off win for the Yankees a possibility. At the bottom, Voit went down on the ninth pitch. Torres ground out to third. Odor faced the new O’s pitcher Cole Sulser and went down swinging as the game went into the tenth inning. The game tied at 2.

The tenth inning was started with ghost runner Ryan McKenna at second base. Mullins, with Wandy Peralta pitching, struck out. Mountcastle singled, driving in McKenna for the Orioles lead. Mountcastle went to second on the throw. Hays walked. With two on and one out, Mancini hit into a double play to end the half, but the O’s took the lead. The Yankees, with the last licks going into the bottom, had Tyler Wade as the ghost runner. Sanchez struck out. LeMahieu doubled with Tyler Wade scoring to tie the game at 3. LeMahieu moved to third on a passed ball. Gallo flew out to the infield. Judge faced another O’s reliever in Dillon Tate. Judge ground out to end the inning and bring it into the eleventh. Game tied at 3.

Urias faced Clay Holmes with Mancini as the ghost runner; he got a base hit to right, moving Mancini to third. Santander with two on and no outs popped out. Mateo flew out to right, and Stanton fired into home, preventing Mancini from advancing. Kelvin Gutierrez was called out on strikes giving the Yankees another chance of a walk-off win. In the bottom, with ghost runner Aaron Judge at second. Giancarlo Stanton led off by walking off Aaron Judge with a single up the middle for the New York Yankees win.

The final score was the New York Yankees 4 and the Baltimore Orioles 3. The winning pitcher was Clay Holmes, and the loser was Dillon Tate.

 

 

 

 

 

New York Yankees: 3 Takeaways from Cole’s brilliant win ending the skid

yankees, gerrit cole

The New York Yankees entered last night’s final game with the Los Angeles Angels after losing four straight games with the hope of righting the ship with Yankee ace Gerrit Cole on the mound facing the inexperienced Packy Naughton. Instead, to the delight of Yankee fans everywhere, Cole had one of his best games since becoming a Yankee getting a season-high 15 strikeouts and winning the game 4-1 to stop the Yankee slid.

Cole wins with a season-high 15 strikeouts

Yankee ace Gerrit Cole took to the mound last night, seemingly with a chip on his shoulder. He was immediately dominant with all of his pitches working. At the end of seven innings of work, he amassed 15 strikeouts, a season-high and only for the fourth time in his career. He got 32 swings and misses as he stopped the Yankee’s skid of losing four games in a row for the 4-1 win, his 14th of the season.

For Cole, it was a homecoming of sorts; it was the first time as a Yankee that he returned home to pitch a game. Cole grew up just 15 miles north of Angel’s statement. Reports are the Cole even drove his beat-up 2006 Toyota Tacoma to the stadium. With a multitude of ticket requests from family and friends, the stands were filled with familiars to impress, and that he did.

“It’s a special day,” Cole said. “It’s always a nice time to come out and see some people back where you’re from. Any player, any person can relate to that. There was a little bit of intensity, trying not to get swept on the road. To do it in front of my family is a cherry on top.”

After his seven innings of work Cole let loose of his game face, banged his fist in his glove, and pointed approvingly to his personal catcher Kyle Higashioka. The last out of the night was a perfect slider that he blew past the Angel’s Max Stassi. Cole in the game permitted just one run without a walk in the game for his highest strikeout total since being acquired by the Yankees in December of 2019.

Cole was helped out in the game by Luke Voit’s two-run single and further supported by Brett Gardner’s run-scoring hit that knocked out Angel starter Packy Naughton from the game. Later in the game, the very hot Aaron Judge racked up some insurance with his 30th home run of the season, a solo shot in the eighth inning.

Is the winning slid over?

The New York Yankee fans have been perplexed by the team’s recent play. The Yankees, after a poor start of the season in the first half, had become baseball’s most winning team since July 17th winning and winning more, at one point 13 straight wins, but then a disappointing 4 game losing stretch that set them back in the AL East. During the consecutive wins, the Tampa Bay Rays only lost 2 games. With the Yankees losing 4 in a row, the Yankees actually dropped two games in the East. Now with the Rays losing last night and the Yankees win, the Yankees picked up a game.

Today is a day of rest for the Yankees, but tomorrow they start a weekend series with the Baltimore Orioles, a team they should do well over, if not sweeping them. They will then move on to a tough series with the Blue Jays; then it gets easier playing the New York Mets and the Orioles again. Again, the Yankees should do well over this stretch. Meanwhile, the Rays face the Twins, Boston again, and the Detroit Tigers, so the standings probably won’t change much.

What are the upcoming roster moves?

As of yesterday, the New York Yankees and all MLB teams could add an additional 2 players to their rosters. However, those moves for the Yankees remain unclear. So let’s get this out of the way right away; the Yankees will likely not see the return of Clint Frazier, Miguel Andujar, Daren O’Day, Zack Britton, or Domingo German during the remains of this season.

Beyond then, there are only questions. We do know that Gleyber Torres will be returning to the team for the Orioles series. Going into the postseason, the Yankees will need pitching. With Albert Abreu sent down to Scranton, the Yankees will most likely look to Michael King or Luis Gil to fill a spot, maybe both. If Luis Severino returns even in a bullpen position, it will likely be the last we see of shortstop Andrew Velazquez. Everything remains fluid.