Yankees’ ace Gerrit Cole fails to come through: ‘I’m sick to my stomach’

Gerrit Cole, New York Yankees

In the biggest game of the New York Yankees’ season, their ace couldn’t deliver. With five full days of rest, Gerrit Cole couldn’t get out of the third inning and ended up taking the loss as the Bombers fell 6-2 to the Boston Red Sox. Their archrivals advanced to the American League Division Series, where they will face the Tampa Bay Rays.

Cole didn’t pitch well in his last start of the regular season, allowing five runs in six innings last Wednesday against the Toronto Blue Jays. Last night, he conceded three runs, including a pair of home runs to Xander Bogaerts and Kyle Schwarber.

“A difficult decision, but one I feel I needed to make,” said Yankees manager Aaron Boone, per USA Today. Cole left with two men on base and nobody out, but Clay Holmes cleaned up his mess with a key double play.

The Yankees’ ace didn’t deliver

Cole said he was “sick to my stomach’’ for failing to come through when it mattered most. He also said that “not achieving your ultimate goal” is the “worst feeling in the world.”

“That’s the guy they gave all that money to. He’s the ace,” Bogaerts said of the Red Sox’s happiness about taking the Yankees’ ace out of the game so early. Still, “everyone coming out of that bullpen is throwing 95-plus.”

Cole has struggled since injuring his hamstring in September 7, with a 6.35 ERA since that point in four starts. He insists he is fine health-wise.

“When it’s all said and done, I didn’t perform the way I wanted to perform,” he said.

The offense once again failed to show up besides Giancarlo Stanton, who hit two balls to the Green Monster and homered late in the game to put the second and final run for the Yankees. Ownership and the front office will have a long, busy winter trying to bring the Bombers back to being really competitive.

New York Yankees: 3 Takeaways from a bad end to a disappointing season

New York Yankees, Aaron Boone

It’s all over for the New York Yankees as they lost the wild card game in Boston. A long and primarily painful season is now behind them as they bombed out in another postseason. The Yankees, with the most championships in all of the sports, haven’t won a World Series in twelve years. In that span, the phrase Bronx Bombers once meant a powerful team that slaughters its opponents now seems to mean a team the bombs out at the end of every season. The Yankees lost the wild card game 6-2 to the Boston Red Sox.

Gerrit Cole bombs big time

At the beginning of this season, having Gerrit Cole on the mound usually meant winning another game; that is no longer true, as evidenced in his last four games when he gave up 18 earned runs. That is not the signature of a pitching ace; it’s not even the sign of a mediocre pitcher. Steinbrenner and company paid huge bucks to acquire Gerrit Cole to come up big in big situations. Instead, he has failed and failed badly.

Last night in a winner-take-all ticket to an eventual World Series, Cole only lasted two innings giving up three earned runs, two of them homers, and walking two Red Sox. That’s a 13.50 ERA, hardly a stat that will win games. Cole, after the game, didn’t give any excuses like that mound wasn’t proper or my hamstring was bothering me; he simply said he didn’t make his pitches.

In his usual manner of protecting his players rather than holding them responsible, Manager Boone actually said I think he made some good pitches. If he meant that he threw a few pitches that weren’t hit out of the park, that is true, and if he wanted to suggest that Cole pitched well, he doesn’t understand baseball. At the very least, an ace should be able to keep a team in the game even if they don’t have their best stuff. Unfortunately, Cole did not do that last night.

Yankee bullpen gives up three runs

This season, the mostly good bullpen has suffered somewhat because the starting pitching hasn’t been stellar, causing them to be overused for most of the season. But, for whatever reason, the bullpen did not respond and lift the Yankees out of the hole that Gerrit Cole created. Instead, they gave up three more runs making it extremely difficult for a poor-hitting team to crawl out from.

Some of this is Cole’s responsibility; to expect any bullpen to get 21 outs scoreless is a tall order. After Cole was removed, manager Boone called in Clay Holmes to pitch two innings of one-hit ball. It will be questioned why he didn’t Boone leave him in longer when he only used  26 pitches. Luis Severino, returning from Tommy John surgery, replaced Holmes and gave one run in 1.1 innings of work. Jonathan Loaisiga, also coming back from a stint on the IL, gave up two more runs. Chad Green pitched 1.2 innings of scoreless ball, but it was too little, too late.

Hitting was a microcosm of the whole season

The New York Yankees have been plagued all season long by long stretches of no-hitting. Droughts that put them in a wild card showdown instead of a division win. Unfortunately, after crawling back to postseason contention, they went on another one of those droughts. Hitters four through nine last night went one for twenty putting all the weight on the lead-off hitters. Giancarlo Stanton and Anthony Rizzo hit home runs, but it wasn’t impactful with no baserunners ahead of them. The Red Sox had only one hit more than the Yankees, but there were runners on base when their sluggers hit.

The New York Yankees have only scored eight runs in their last five games. It was undoubtedly a very inopportune time to go on a hitting drought. Nevertheless, this is the season the Yankees have had, was so inconsistent that it caused them to miss another try at the elusive 28th World Championship. For the Yankees, it’s time to lick their wounds and when they get tired of the taste, try to figure out what went wrong and how to fix it before the start of the 2022 baseball season.

 

New York Yankees Recap: Yankees don’t hit and Cole bombs in the wild card, Yankees go home

New York Yankees, Kyle Higashioka, gerrit cole

Tonight, with the whole season on the line, the New York Yankees faced the Boston Red Sox in the 2021 AL wild-card game. Although the Red Sox won more games in the regular season, causing the game to be played at Fenway Park in Boston, the last time the two teams met, the Yankees swept the Red Sox. They wanted just one more win tonight to get to the divisional series against the Tampa Bay Rays. Unfortunately, it was not to be the hitters didn’t hit, and the pitchers didn’t pitch well. The final score was the Boston Red Sox 7 and the New York Yankees 2. Tonight starts the long offseason of discontent.

The Yankees tried to put their best foot forward by sending their ace Gerrit Cole to the mound to face the Red Sox Nathan Eovaldi, a  former Yankee pitcher. Cole was 16-8 with an ERA of 3.23 and an incredible 243 strikeouts.  Cole has pitched to the Red Sox four times this season, with the Yankees losing two games.

The Red Sox sent Nathan Eovaldi to the mound to hold down the Yankees. Eovaldi is a former Yankee pitcher (2015-16, 23-11). With the Red, Sox Eovaldi has been 20-15 with an ERA of 4.11. This season he is 11-9 with an ERA of 3.75. The Yankees and Eovaldi have met in the postseason once before. In 2018 in game three of the divisional series, he pitched seven innings in the 16-1 Yankee loss, the Yankees’ most lopsided loss in their postseason history.

Eovaldi is coming off a September 29th win over the Baltimore Orioles when he gave up only four hits in a scoreless effort, striking out 7. Still, on the 24th, he lasted only 2.2 innings against the Yankees giving up seven earned runs in the Yankee win. Over the 2021 season, Eovaldi has a 2-4 record against the Yankees.

In the game, Anthony Rizzo led off the first inning against Eovaldi and ground out to first. Aaron Judge flew out to right for the second out. Then, Giancarlo Stanton singled to the monster. Joey Gallo struck out when he couldn’t hold up. At the bottom, Kyle Schwarber led off and flew out to Gardner in centerfield. Kiki Hernandez popped out to Torres at second. Rafael Devers walked. Xander Bogaerts homered to left-center, driving in Devers for the Red Sox two-run lead in the first. Alex Verdugo flew out, but the damage was done. Red Sox 2 Yankees 0.

Gleyber Torres led off the second inning by flying out to right field. Brett Gardner struck out. Gio Urshela singled to the right side. Kyle Higashioka struck out to leave Gio stranded. At the bottom, Hunter Renfroe struck out. Kevin Plawecki doubled to the centerfield wall. Bobby Dalbec struck out. Christian Arroyo struck out stranding one. Red Sox 2 Yankees 0.

The third inning was led off by Andrew Velazquez, who flew out to left field. Rizzo struck out swinging. Judge flew out to the right-center wall to end the half. Schwarber led off the bottom and homered to right field.  Hernandez singled. Devers walked, and that knocked the Yankee ace out of the game. Xander Bogaerts faced Clay Holmes and struck out. Verdugo hit into a double play to end the inning, but the Red Sox picked up another run. Red Sox 3 Yankees 0.

Giancarlo Stanton led off the top of the fourth and struck out swinging. Gallo flew out to center field. Torres flew out to center as Eovaldi had his way with Yankee hitters. At the bottom, Renfroe faced Holmes still on the mound for the Yankees and singled up the center. Plawecki hit into a double play for two outs in the inning. Dalbec flew out to far-right to end the inning. Red Sox 3 Yankees 0.

Brett Gardner led off the fifth inning by striking out. Urshela flew out. Higashioka struck out to end another Yankees scoreless inning. At the bottom, Christian Arroyo against new Yankee pitcher Luis Severino ground out to second. Schwarber ground out to first. Hernandez flew out to Judge in right as Severino put down the side in order. Boston 3 New York 0.

The sixth inning was led off by Rougie Odor pinch-hitting for Anthony Velazquez, and Odor went down on three pitches.  Rizzo homered into the right-field stands. Judge beat out a roller to short for a single, knocking Eovaldi out of the game. Stanton facing new pitcher Ryan Brasier and doubled with Judge in a baserunning mistake trying to reach home, was out at the plate. Gallo popped out to third, but the Yankees got on the board with the Rizzo homer. At the bottom, Devers struck out. Bogaerts walked. Verdugo doubled with Bogaerts scoring from first. Renfroe, against new pitcher Jonathan Loaisiga walked. Travis Shaw pinch-hitting for Plawecki struck out. Dalbec struck out to end the inning. Boston 4 New York Yankees 1.

Glyber Torres led off the seventh inning against Tanner Houck and flew out to center. Gardner stuck out swinging. Urshela struck out for another 1-2-3 inning for Red Sox pitching. Arroyo led off the bottom and ground out to third. Schwarber, who homered in the game, walked.  Hernandez walked, and that was it for Loaisiga. Chad Green came in and faced Devers, who flew out to Gardner with the runners staying put. Bogaerts walked for the third walk of the inning. With the bases loaded and two outs, Verdugo doubled with a run scoring and Verdugo out at second. Red Sox 6 Yankees 1.

In the eighth inning, with the New York Yankees down by five runs, Gary Sanchez pinch-hitting for Higashioka lined out to center. Odor flew out to center. Rizzo, who scored the only Yankee run, struck out to end the half. At the bottom, Renfroe struck out. Christain Vazquez, in his first at bat, went down on strikes. Dalbec ground out to third. Red Sox 6 Yankees 1.

The New York Yankees, with lack licks on the line in the top of the ninth, Aaron Judge ground out to short. Then, Giancarlo Stanton homered around the Pesky Pole in right. Next, Gallo flew out to the warning track in right field. Finally, Gleyber Torres flew out to right to end the season for the New York Yankees.

The wild card final score was the Boston Red Sox 6 and the New York Yankees 2. The winning pitcher was Nathan Eovaldi, and the loser was Gerrit Cole.

 

 

 

 

Yankees’ ace Gerrit Cole is ready to go for tonight’s win-or-go-home affair

yankees, gerrit cole

The New York Yankees refrained from using their ace Gerrit Cole on short rest over the weekend, and ended up winning 1-0 against the Tampa Bay Rays to avoid playing a tiebreaker game with the Toronto Blue Jays.

Thankfully for the Yankees, Cole will be well-rested and ready to take the ball tonight against the Boston Red Sox in the American League Wild Card game, to be played at Fenway Park.

“It’s like, ‘Can we get it going already?’” Cole said, to MLB.com. “It’s like a bit of a waiting game, which is good for the body and good for the mind, to a certain extent, to recover. But you’re champing at the bit to get back out there. I’m excited for the challenge that’s ahead of us.”

The Yankees’ ace is looking to right the ship

Cole’s last start of the season didn’t go particularly well, as he allowed five earned runs in six innings against the Jays last Wednesday, jeopardizing his chances of winning the AL Cy Young. He still can win the award, though, as his main competition, Robbie Ray, had a similar stat line on Thursday.

Cole’s fastball was a problem that day, as he allowed five extra-base hits with the pitch, whiffing only three bats. He said he didn’t locate it very well.

“I don’t think he’s far off at all,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “I think the stuff is there. In Toronto the other day, they banged him for a couple of home runs on a couple of just-missed heaters. So I think everything is there for him to put it together [Tuesday]. It’s just about executing in the right quadrants against a good team.”

Cole finished the year with a 4.91 ERA against the Red Sox this season, but will be looking for vengeance. He remains the Yankees’ best pitcher and will try to give his team the best chance to win.

New York Yankees: The whole season lies with Gerrit Cole tonight

New York Yankees, Gerrit Cole

New York Yankees general partner and owner Hal Steinbrenner spent $324 million to see Gerrit Cole in a Yankee uniform and pitching for the Yankees, at Yankee Stadium. Cole, 30, was born on September 8, 1990, in Newport Beach, California, to Mark and Karen Cole. Cole’s father was from New York and a Yankee fan. His father would tell him stories of Lou Gehrig and other famous Yankees, and the young boy would quickly become a baseball fan and Yankee fanatic.

Now, tonight Cole will try to show Steinbrenner and company that they made a good investment. Games like this are the exact reason the Yankees wanted Cole.  Cole is 16-8 record, an ERA of 3.23, and an incredible 243 strikeouts. So far, with the Yankees, he is 23-11 with a 3.11 ERA in two seasons. Cole has pitched to the Red Sox four times this season, with the Yankees losing two games. Cole is coming off a loss to the Toronto Blue Jays when he gave up five runs in six innings of work. He hopes to turn it around tonight, dominate the Red Sox, and propel the Yankees into the divisional series.

More on how Cole got to tonight’s game. On weekends one could see the young Cole playing baseball at local ball fields, playing any position so that he could play. His father certainly nurtured Cole’s interest in the Yankees by flying him across the country seven times to Yankee Stadium to see his idols, Mariano Rivera, Derek Jeter, and Andy Pettitte. Cole was a member of the Tustin Western Little League team of Newport Beach.

In 2001 his dad would take the young Cole to the World Series in Arizona to see his favorite Yankees play. The eleven-year-old could be seen in the stands with a Yankee uniform and cap on while holding a sign saying “Yankee Fan Today, Tomorrow, Forever.” Being a lifelong Yankee fan had to, in some way, sway him to being the pitching Ace for a club he loved all his life? The signing of Cole is not the first time Cole and the Yankees have interacted. The Yankees drafted Cole in 2008, but Cole decided to attend college at UCLA. They were also outbid by the Pirates for Cole when he got out of college.

Cole attended Orange Lutheran High School and played on the team as a pitcher. In this sophomore year, he once pitched 45 innings without allowing a run. In his junior year, his fastball reached 94mph. At the start of his senior season, fifty baseball scouts would attend his opening start. He would go 8-2 that season with a .047 ERA while striking out 121. The Yankees would select Cole in the first-round draft in 2008, but Cole would attend college instead.

Cole’s introduction to college pitching at UCLA would be a bit rude, as he faced more talented players. He would go 4-8 with an ERA of 3.49. His next year would be more successful as he went 11-4, with an ERA of 3.37 with 153 strikeouts. In 2011 Cole would sign with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Cole attended spring training in 2012 but was optioned to the Bradenton Marauders of the Florida State League. Cole pitched to a 2.90 ERA before being promoted to the Indianapolis Indians, a triple-A Pirates minor league team. There he would go 5-3 with a 2.91 ERA in twelve starts.

Injuries on the Pirates would cause Cole to be brought up to the majors; he made his MLB debut on June 11, 2013. In his first appearance, he struck out his first batter in just three pitches. In the game, he would also get his first hit. He gave up two earned runs in the game but got his first win as a major league pitcher. He would hit his first home run on Sept. 7, 2014, his second on August 26th, and his third for the Pirates, on May 26, 2016, a three-run blast into the visitor’s bullpen.

For the Pirates, he would go 10-7 in his first year, 11-5 in his second, and an impressive 19-8 in his third year while being an All-Star, MVP nominee, and coming in fourth in the Cy Young voting. He would have an offseason in 2016 going only 7-10. 2017 would be only slightly better when he went 12-12. At the end of the season, he would be traded to the Houston Astros. With a new pitching coach and new technologies, Cole would again find his form. He would go 15-5 in 2018 while posting a 2.88 ERA. Cole’s 2019 was even better, going 20-5 with an ERA of 2.50.

During the 2019 postseason, Cole would get his second taste of postseason play, dominating. In 2018 he would go 1-1 with a 3.46 ERA. He would go seven or more innings in all five of his 2019 starts, sometimes going over 100 pitches. On October 5, against the Rays in the ALDS, he would not allow a run in the 3-1 win. On 10/10, he would again face the Rays and pitch to a .057 ERA in the win. On 10/15, he would lose to the Yankees but post an ERA of just .040. In the ALCS against the Nationals on 10/22, he would get a 5-4 win. To finish his postseason, he would get another win against the Nationals on 10/27 while allowing only one run in the 7-1 Houston win. He would end the postseason 4-1 with an ERA of 1.72.

Once interviewed by David Laurila, he would ask Cole what his hitting approach is; Cole would answer, “I try to get early contact and keep it on the ground. I like to keep the ball down as much as I can. Strikeouts are something that just happens. You don’t go for strikeouts because your pitch count gets too high. When you get that opportunity, you have to put them away with whatever is working that day. That’s the approach I’ve always had to have. I’ve got to keep my pitch count down. If you want to go deep into ballgames, you have to stay under that 100 mark.”

Cole is a fearless monster on the mound and attacks hitters. He is durable and goes deep into games, something that will rest the Yankee bullpen. In his short career, he has been an All-Star three times, been an MVP nominee twice, and voted for the Cy Young Award three times, coming in second in the voting this past year.

Although he has turned out to be the New York Yankees winningest pitcher, he doesn’t seem to be the dominant pitcher he was for the Houston Astros last year. He appears to have struggled at times, even in the games that he has won. Also, Cole has given up home runs; lot’s of them. He has given up a home run in every one of his starts. The Yankees have lost the last four games that Cole started. In those games, Cole gave up eight home runs while walking nine hitters. In 2019 he was 21-5 with an ERA of 2.51; last year, his earned run average was considerably higher at 3.64.

One would have to assume that this crazy baseball season and its broken-up spring training may have something to do with Cole’s performance. There is another possibility, could he be another great pitcher to come to the Yankees and flop? A.J. Burnett is the most recent overpaid pitching bust for the New York Yankees. He was not the first, the Yankees have had over a dozen premier pitchers to come to them in the last 30 years that couldn’t cut it in New York.

Since manager Aaron Boone has matched him up with his battery mate, catcher Kyle Higashioka, the Yankees have won five in a row at one point and pitched to an ERA of just 1.32. If the New York Yankees get all the way to the World Series, Cole could start six or seven games for the Yankees, although some would be on short rest.  In his one postseason start so far last year, he was totally dominating, beating the Cleveland Indians, pitching seven strong innings with 105 pitches, allowing just two runs while walking no one, and racking up 13 strikeouts.  Striking out 13 hitters while issuing no walks has only been done by one other baseball player, and he was Tom Seaver in 1973.

In one of the most important games he will play, he faces the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park in Boston. It’s the 2021 Wild Card game. Cole will face the Red Sox’s Nathan Eovaldi in the 8:08 pm EDT contest. On September 24, he gave up seven earned runs over 2.2 innings of work in the Yankees sweep of the Red Sox at Yankee Stadium. Buckle up fans it will be a hard-fought match by both teams.

When he became a Yankee, Cole and his family moved to Greenwich, CT, a suburb of New York. The 6’4″ Cole is married to his wife Amy, who he met as a softball player at UCLA. His brother-in-law is Brandon Crawford of the San Francisco Giants. He and his wife love to cook and entertain family and friends. Cole is a healthy cook and a nutritional nut. Amy has a blog called “the Culinary Experience”. The two gave birth to a son earlier last summer. Cole has a younger sister Erin.

New York Yankees: Tonight is the night, win or go home, the Wild Card

The New York Yankees have won many games this season, but they also have lost a lot, winning 92 and losing 70. It’s been the worst season since Aaron Boone has taken over as manager. Discarding the shortened season, they haven’t lost this many games since 2017. Regardless of the up and down season, they had this year, in the end, they managed to scratch and claw their way to the postseason. Tonight a few hours after 8:08 pm EDT, the Yankees will know if they will go to the divisional series and continue in the postseason.

The Yankees are in this winner take all game tonight because they have not gotten season wins over any of their division rivals except the lowly Baltimore Orioles and only by a few games. However, they dominated the National League teams they played and had a winning record over all the remaining teams in the AL, except the Angels with a record of 3-4.

The New York Yankees have a lot of work to do. To advance in the postseason and win a 28th World Championship, they will have to win over teams that haven’t been able to win over, all season. First, tonight the Yankees will face the age-old rival Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park in Boston. It came down to the last week of the season to find out if they would have the desired home-field advantage, but when they lost a game, and the Sox won they ended up with identical records. Under the rules, when that happens, the team with the best season record against the opponent gets that home-field advantage. If the Yankees can win the wild card game, they will then fight the Tampa Bay Rays for the division win. Superstar slugger Aaron Judge has this to say about the wild card game:

“That’s going to be a fun game right there. It’s going to be action-packed,” Judge said. “They’re going to bring their A-Game. We’re going to bring our A-Game. It’s just going to be another great game in this big rivalry that we have and we’re looking forward to it. We love playing at home, but we’re excited anywhere we went. Getting a chance to go to Boston to play it is an exciting matchup for sure. We have a great starting rotation, our bullpen is fantastic. Even our offense… a lot of tough outs,” Judge said. “If you’re able to do that in the postseason and wear teams down, you can go far.”

The only thing Aaron Judge didn’t really touch on is that the Yankees have had long droughts of not hitting. The Yankees had only 13 hits in their last three games played and a total of six runs combined.

Getting back to tonight, the Yankees will send their best pitcher to the mound, Gerrit Cole, the Yankee ace, to face a former Yankee Nathan Eovaldi. Cole is 16-8 record, an ERA of 3.23, and an incredible 243 strikeouts. So far, with the Yankees, he is 23-11 with a 3.11 ERA in two seasons. Cole has pitched to the Red Sox four times this season, with the Yankees losing two of those games. Cole is coming off a loss to the Toronto Blue Jays when he gave up five runs in six innings of work.

On paper, the New York Yankees have an excellent chance of winning this game, but there is a concern. Although Cole has won a lot of games, his winning percentage was best earlier in the season. It got to the point that when Cole took the mound, the Yankees were nearly assured of a win. Unfortunately, that is no longer true. Cole had struggled at times during September when he lost as many games as he has won. His innings pitched is down, as is his strikeout rate. In addition, he seemed to have tired as the season progressed.

The Boston Red Sox will send Nathan Eovaldi to the mound to hold down the Yankees. Eovaldi is a former Yankee pitcher (2015-16, 23-11). With the Red, Sox Eovaldi has been 20-15 with an ERA of 4.11. This season he is 11-9 with an ERA of 3.75. The Yankees and Eovaldi have met in the postseason once before. In 2018 in game three of the divisional series, he pitched seven innings in the 16-1 Yankee loss, the Yankees’ most lopsided loss in their postseason history.

Eovaldi is coming off a September 29th win over the Baltimore Orioles when he gave up only four hits in a scoreless effort, striking out 7. Still, on the 24th, he lasted only 2.2 innings against the Yankees giving up seven earned runs in the Yankee win. Over the 2021 season, Eovaldi has a 2-4 record against the Yankees.

The New York Yankees hope that Cole will be at his best tonight and go deep into the game. If he doesn’t, the Yankee bullpen is rested and ready. The Yankees have more options in the bullpen than the Red Sox. The Yankees will pull out all the stops to get into the divisional series with the Tampa Bay Rays in a winner-take-all game.

Tonight’s wild-card game will be televised nationally at 8:08 pm EDT on ESPN. So tune in; there will be no shortage of excitement or nail-biting for either team’s fans in this winner take all event. The loser goes home to lick their wounds.

New York Yankees walk off to Fenway and the Wild Card, what you need to know

Gerrit Cole, New York Yankees

The New York Yankees entered yesterday’s last game of the season at Yankee Stadium with the hope of salvaging a game from the Tampa Bay Rays and holding onto a berth in the wild card one game winner takes all game. They did that and in a dramatic walk-off fashion. It was an extraordinary game that, in a way, was a microcosm of the entire season played out in a few hours.

It’s no secret that the Yankees have had a roller-coaster season. They have had periods of great pitching and periods of dismal pitching. They have had prolonged droughts of no hitting at all for what was supposed to be one of the most potent lineups in baseball. Yesterday was no different; the Yankee pitching was superb, but the guys from the Bronx just couldn’t hit the ball. It was so extreme that the Yankees had only two hits in the game in a scoreless contest until the bottom of the ninth inning.

At the bottom of the ninth, Odor led off and singled up the middle. He was pinch-run by Tyler Wade. Gleyber Torres flew out to right with Wade going to second. Anthony Rizzo singled with Wade going to third and Rizzo going to second on the throw. With Aaron Judge coming up, the Rays went to Kittredge. Judge hit a ground ball to second, but the speedy Tyler Wade flashed to home with a sliding Yankees one-run walk-off win. Judge and Wade showed their worth as they have all season long, but this time it was significant as the Yankees secured a wild card berth.

On Tuesday, the Yankees will play their long-time rival Red Sox at Fenway Park. They are playing the wild card game at Fenway because they have identical 92-70 records, eight games behind the division-leading Tampa Bay Rays. When there is a tie, the team with the best record off the opposing team during the season gets the home-field advantage. The Yankees have put their rocky season behind them and are just happy to have one more chance to get to the divisional series.

Tuesday, October 5, 8:08 pm EDT – The Wild Card Game!

The Boston Red Sox will send Nathan Eovaldi to the mound to hold down the Yankees. Eovaldi is a former Yankee pitcher (2015-16, 23-11). After the 2016 season, Eovaldi would have Tommy John surgery and would not pitch during the 2017 season, after which he would become a free agent. On November 23, 2016, the Yankees released him.  He signed a two-year contract with the Rays although he didn’t pitch in 2017, he did have ten starts in 2018 with an ERA of 4.26. But on July 25th, he was traded to the Red Sox.

With the Red, Sox Eovaldi has been 20-15 with an ERA of 4.11. This season he is 11-9 with an ERA of 3.75. The Yankees and Eovaldi have met in the postseason once before. In 2018 in game three of the divisional series, he pitched seven innings in the 16-1 Yankee loss, the Yankees’ most lopsided loss in their postseason history. The New York Yankees are hoping for a better result when they meet up Tuesday night.

Eovaldi is coming off a September 29th win over the Baltimore Orioles when he gave up only four hits in a scoreless effort, striking out 7. Still, on the 24th, he lasted only 2.2 innings against the Yankees giving up seven earned runs in the Yankee win. Over the 2021 season, Eovaldi has a 2-4 record against the Yankees.

Eovaldi will face the New York Yankees ace, Gerrit Cole. Cole is the Yankees winningest pitcher with a 16-8 record, an ERA of 3.23, and an incredible 243 strikeouts. Cole came to the Yankees when, in December of 2019, GM Brian Cashman, Aaron Boone, and pitching great Andy Pettitte traveled to Califonia and lured him to the Yankees with a box of wine and $324 million. This after pitching 35-10 for the Houston Astros.

So far, with the Yankees, he is 23-11 with a 3.11 ERA in two seasons. Cole has pitched to the Red Sox four times this season, with the Yankees losing two of those games. Cole is coming off a loss to the Toronto Blue Jays when he gave up five runs in six innings of work.

On paper, the New York Yankees have an excellent chance of winning this game, but there is a concern. Although Cole has won a lot of games, his winning percentage was best earlier in the season. It got to the point that when Cole took the mound, the Yankees were nearly assured of a win. Unfortunately, that is no longer true. Cole had struggled at times during September when he lost as many games as he has won. His innings pitched is down, as is his strikeout rate. In addition, he seemed to have tired as the season progressed.

The Yankees hope he will be at his best tomorrow and go deep into the game. If he doesn’t, the Yankee bullpen is rested and ready. The Yankees have more options in the bullpen than the Red Sox. In a winner-take-all game, the Yankees will pull out all the stops to get into the divisional series with the Tampa Bay Rays.

For those that want to attend the game at Fenway, you had better act quickly, all the good seats are gone, and the standing room only starts at $210. It might be better to watch the 8:08 pm game on television. It will be nationally televised on ESPN. Every Yankee fan will be glued to their TVs in another nail-biter that Yankee fans have come to expect.

 

 

 

Yankees: Cole’s fastball was a problem against the Blue Jays

yankees, gerrit cole

The New York Yankees let a winnable game slip through their hands on Wednesday, when they fell 6-5 to the Toronto Blue Jays and further complicated the AL Wild Card outlook. At the moment, before Thursday’s games, the Bombers are still in the first Wild Card spot with a 90-68 record, but four clubs remain separated by two games.

During last night’s start, the Yankees couldn’t enjoy a quality outing from their ace, Gerrit Cole. Competing to give New York the best possible chance to win and, additionally, for the Cy Young award, the right-hander allowed nine hits and five earned runs in six innings, increasing his ERA to 3.23.

Per MLB.com, the pitcher said he didn’t feel tired, stating that he has plenty left in the tank. In fact, he will likely be needed in a must-win scenario for his next outing: either the Wild Card game or the final day of the campaign.

The Yankees’ ace wasn’t fooling anyone with the heater

It just wasn’t his night. The Yankees’ ace faced perhaps the best offense in baseball and couldn’t miss too many bats with his signature fastball. In fact, the pitch was getting hammered all night long and he allowed five extra base hits with it.

Two of those hits were home runs, by Marcus Semien and Bo Bichette.

“I think we’re running into some really tough teams,” Cole said. “I just was not quite sharp enough today. That’s just the bottom line. I think that I certainly showed the ability to make the pitches that we needed to over the course of the game; I just didn’t make enough of them.”

The Yankees now have a narrow one-game advantage over the Boston Red Sox, the owners of the second Wild Card. The Seattle Mariners and the Blue Jays lurk.

New York and Toronto will play the series finale tonight at Rogers Centre.

“Physically, I think the velocity is in a good spot,” Cole said. “Things have rebounded well since a couple of those injury mishaps. I’m in a good enough spot to make enough good pitches. I’ve just got to make those pitches at the right times.”

“They definitely came out swinging aggressively at the heater,” catcher Kyle Higashioka said. “The first two innings set the tone. After that, we reined it in, but by then, the main damage was pretty much done.”

New York Yankees 9/30: 4 Takeaways from Yankees loss to the Blue Jays

New York Yankees, Jonathan Loaisiga

After an incredible run of winning seven games in a row, the New York Yankees hoped to win another one last night by taking the series from the Blue Jays. The Yankees swept the Red Sox and retook the number one berth in the wild card race, gaining home-field advantage and putting the Red Sox two games behind. With five games to go in the regular season, the Yankees sent their ace Gerrit Cole to the mound at Roger’s Center in Toronto to face the Jays Jose Berrios. At the end of the night, Berrios acted like the Toronto ace and Gole didn’t; the Yankees lost when Bo Bichette hit a homer in the eighth, the Blue Jays edged the Yankees 6-5.

Gerrit Cole is no longer a sure thing

The outlook for New York Yankee ace has changed. After three poor games in a row, when Cole takes the mound, there is no reason to believe the Yankees will win the game. Please make no mistake about it; he is still probably the Yankee’s best starter, but it appears that he has tired; he is not as sharp and not as quick to make the adjustments that he is known to create.

In the past month, Cole lost as many games as he has won; his last three are the worst of the month as the team tries desperately to be in the postseason for a chance at a 28th World Series win. On September 24th, he got a win going six innings only giving up three runs. But also walked three and was taken out before giving up another two runs. In the other two games, he gave up 12 runs, including five home runs. Last night he gave up two home runs, and a total of five earned runs as the Yankees winning streak ended. Cole’s September ERA is 5.13, not the signature of an ace.

Pitching: Who’s hot and who’s not

To the delight of Yankee fans, Jonathan Loaisiga was activated and back off the IL. He has been missing from the Yankees bullpen for 22 days. Last night arguably, the Yankees’ best reliever was back, and he announced it at the bottom of the seventh inning against the Jays; Springer struck out on a 99 mph slider. Semien ground out to LeMahieu. Guerrero ground out to LeMahieu for the 1-2-3 inning.

Last night the usually dependable lights out Clay Holmes gave of the losing run when he allowed Bo Bichette his second homer of the night. But due to how he has been pitching, he can mostly be forgiven. Likewise, most of the bullpen has been doing a great job. Andrew Heaney has proven he is not primetime and has been assigned and is now with low-A Tampa. After a period of undependability, Chad Green and closer Aroldis Chapman seem back on track.

Hitting: Who’s hot and who’s not

For most of the season, especially during the last month, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton have been on a rip, carrying the team on their backs. Stanton, for the first time in his previous five games, didn’t hit a home run. Judge, for his part last night, did drive in his 95th RBI but was also homerless.

Joey Gallo last night was the poster boy for why the Yankees lost. The ordinarily defensive great let a ball drop in front of him when neither he nor the advancing Gio Urshela called for the ball. Gallo was also 0-2 after being 0-5 the previous night. The bottom line is that neither Gallo nor Rizzo are doing the job the Yankees thought they would when they added them at the trade deadline.

Last night with the hot Brett Gardner due up in the seventh, Boone decided to pinch-hit Luke Voit, that failed as the injury-prone Voit struck out and limped off the field. Gio Urshela has been pretty hot this month, but last night he made what might be the defensive play of the season. He managed to dive for a ground ball, caught it, and threw a laser to Rizzo while lying on his back for an out.

Where do the Yankees stand in the wild card race?

Even with the loss last night, the New York Yankees still own the home-field advantage in the wild card game. But with the Red Sox win last night over the Baltimore Orioles, they are just one game behind. So if the Yankees lose tonight and the Sox win, they will be tied for that first spot. Because the Red Sox have the better season record over the Yankees, the home field advantage would revert to Boston, and the game would be played at Fenway Park.

In the race, the Yankees indeed are watching the Seattle Mariners, as the Mariners are just a half-game out of the wild card, and the Jays are just a half-game behind them. The Yankees must win 3 of the season’s last four games to secure a wild card appearance. In the worst-case scenario, if the Yankees don’t win tonight, the Tampa Bay Rays adding an insult to injury after taking the division could also decide the Yankee’s 2021 wild card fate. The Yankees, to save face, must avoid that at all costs. If the Yankees don’t pitch and hit well in these last games, even “Bronxie” the turtle won’t save them.

 

New York Yankees Recap: Yankees lose a squeaker in the eighth at Rogers’ Center

yankees, gerrit cole

After an incredible run of winning seven games in a row, the New York Yankees hoped to win another one tonight, taking the series from the Blue Jays. The Yankees swept the Red Sox and, with the win last night, retook the number one berth in the wild card race, gaining home-field advantage and putting the Red Sox two games behind, but the Yankees couldn’t get complacent as the Blue Jays, and Seattle Mariners were nipping at their heels.

With five games to go in the regular season, the Yankees sent their ace Gerrit Cole to the mound at Roger’s Center in Toronto to face the Jays Jose Berrios. At the end of the night, with a homer by Bo Bichette in the eighth, the Blue Jays edged the Yankees 6-5.

The game started with DJ LeMahieu at the plate and Jose Berrio on the mound; LeMahieu went down on strikes. Anthony Rizzo also went down on strikes. Aaron Judge made it three as Berrios stuck out the Yankee side. At the bottom, George Springer doubled. Marcus Semien got a two-run homer into the left-field stands. Vlad Guerrero, with no outs, flew out to Gallo in left. Bo Bichette doubled. Teoscar Hernandez ground out to second, but Bichette went to third. Two outs. Lourdes Gurriel ground out to short. Blue Jays 2 Yankees 0.

The top of the second saw DH Giancarlo Stanton ground out to Bichette at short. Joey Gallo, who went 0-5 last night, flew out to the far center. Gleyber Torres also ground out to short to end the half scoreless. At the bottom, Cory Dickerson flew out to Gallo in left. Santiago Espinal doubled easily up the left-field line. Reese McGuire went down swinging. Springer singled, scoring Espinal. Semien struck out. Blue Jays 3 Yankees 0.

Gio Urshela led off the third inning by popping out to center. Brett Gardner went down on strikes. Kyle Higashioka struck out; Berrios was perfect through three. At the bottom, Guerrero ground out to short. Bichette homered to center. Hernandez struck out. Gurriel struck out. Toronto Blue Jays 4 New York Yankees 0.

The fourth inning was led off by LeMahieu, who ground out to short. Rizzo grounded out to second. Judge ground out up the middle for a perfect four innings for Berrios. At the bottom, with Cole still on the mound, faced Dickerson, who flew out to Gardner in center. Espinal struck out. McGuire flew out to center to end the inning. Blue Jays 4 Yankees 0.

Giancarlo Stanton led off the fifth inning by struck out swinging. Gallo struck out. Torres doubled to left to break up Berrios’ perfect game. Urshela singled, driving in Torres as the Yankees got on the board. Gardner got an RBI double driving in Urshela. Higashioka, with one on and two outs, ground out to first to end the half, but the Yankees picked up two runs. At the bottom, Springer led off by doubling to left both Urshela and Gallo let it fall between them as they both backed off. . Semien flew out to right, but Springer made it to third. Guerrero doubled as Springer scored. Bichette struck out. Hernandez few out to Gardner. Blue Jays 5 Yankees 2.

The sixth inning was led off by LeMahieu, who doubled to center. Rizzo ground out. Judge had a sac fly scoring LeMahieu. Stanton ground out to third to end the half, but the Yankees picked up a run. At the bottom Gurriel out. Dickerson lined out to left. Espinal singled. McGuire flew out to Gardner in center. Blue Jays 5 New York Yankees 3.

Joey Gallo led off the seventh inning by facing new pitcher Tim Mayza and was hit by a pitch. Torres, who broke up the perfect game by Berrios, singled on a slow roller to left, moving Gallo to second. Urshela, with two on and no outs, went down swinging for the first out. Luke Voit pinch-hitting for Gardner struck out. Higashioka got a two-run single, tying the game at 5. LeMahieu faced the new pitcher Adam Cimber and flew out to center, but the Yankees scored two runs to tie up the game. New York Yankees 5 Blue Jays 5.

At the bottom of the inning against Jonathan Loaisiga, Springer struck out on a 99 mph slider. Semien ground out to LeMahieu. Guerrero ground out to LeMahieu for the 1-2-3 inning for Loaisiga after coming off the IL and not pitching for four weeks. Yankees 5 Jays 5.

The eighth inning was led off by Rizzo, who flew out to Hernandez in right. Judge tapped back to the pitcher Cimber. Stanton flew out to the warning track in center to end the half. Bo Bichette led off the bottom of the inning by hitting a homer to center to retake the lead. Hernandez struck out. Gurriel ground to short, and Urshela laid out to get it and threw from his back for the second out. Dickerson chopped out to end the inning, but the Jays retook the lead. Blue Jays 6 Yankees 5.

With last licks on the line for the New York Yankees, Gary Sanchez pinch hit for Joey Gallo leading off and went down looking. Gleyber Torres singled to left. Gio Urshela flew out to center. Torres tagged and made it to second. Tyler Wade pinch-hitting for Gardner flew out to center to end the game.

The final score was the Toronto Blue Jays 6 and the New York Yankees 5. The winning pitcher was Adam Cimber, the loser was Clay Holmes and the save went to Jordan Romano.