- Rally To Tie: For the third time in the last six games, the Yankees did not have a hit after four innings. Miguel Andujar reached on a Matt Chapman error of all things with one out in the fifth inning for the team’s first baserunner, and he was immediately erased on a double play. It wasn’t until a Gleyber Torres two-out single in the sixth that the Yankees had a base hit. The game-tying rally came in the seventh. The Yankees loaded the bases on an infield hit (Brett Gardner), a single (Giancarlo Stanton), and a walk (Andrew McCutchen). Great at-bat for McCutchen, who fell behind in the count 1-2, fouled away two two-strike pitches, then took three just out of the zone for the walk. Aaron Hicks followed with a bases loaded walk to tie the game. Alas, the Yankees did not score any more runs that inning. Two strikeouts and a pop-up stranded the bases loaded. Gah.
- A Happ-y Rebound: Very good bounceback start for J.A. Happ. A great start, really. He held the Athletics to one run, a Stephen Piscotty solo homer, in six innings plus one batter after getting torched for five runs in 4.1 innings last time out. Happ was razor sharp. Inside, outside, up, down … he was throwing the ball wherever he wanted. His line: 6 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 1 HB on 78 pitches. He exited the game after allowing a leadoff single in the seventh because he was about to go through the middle of the lineup a third time and Jed Lowrie has great numbers against him. Fantastic outing against a great team for Happ. Glad to see the last start was just a blip.
warmhot: Luke Voit is the hero we need, not the hero we deserve. For the third straight game and the seventh time in his last 12 games, Voit socked a home run, this one a seventh inning go-ahead solo home run against Fernando Rodney. Watch the video above. Rodney put an 81 mph changeup on a tee. A terrible pitch and Voit did terrible things to it to give the Yankees a 2-1 lead. Fortunately the Yankees did not stop there. Aaron Hicks singled in a run in the eighth and defensive replacement Adeiny Hechavarria clocked a solo homer in the ninth. Gardner added a fifth run in the ninth with a well-placed grounder off the first baseman’s glove. Not a bad night for the midseason trade pickups. McCutchen, Voit, and Hechavarria went a combined 2-for-7 (.286) with two homers and two walks, plus Happ (and Zach Britton) did his thing on the mound.
- The Bullpen: Big ups to David Robertson, who got the three biggest outs of the game. He inherited a runner on first with no outs from Happ and went strikeout, walk, strikeout, strikeout against the 3-4-5-6 hitters to keep the score tied 1-1. That was right after the Yankees stranded the bases loaded too. Felt inevitable that the A’s would score after that. They didn’t thanks to Robertson. Three quick and easy outs for Britton in the eighth and Dellin Betances in the ninth. Dellin extended his AL record to 37 consecutive relief appearances with a strikeout.
- Leftovers: Stanton, Voit, and Gardner all hit what probably would’ve been short porch homers at Yankee Stadium in the first four innings. They were fly outs in Oakland … two hits for Gardner and two times on base for McCutchen (walks), Hicks (single, walk), and Torres (single, walk). Nineteen walks in the last 32 games for Gleyber … the Yankees had one baserunner in the first five innings and that runner reached on an error. They had eleven baserunners (five hits, five walks, one reach on error) in the final four innings … loved Aaron Boone going to Betances even with a four-run lead in the ninth. There’s an off-day Thursday so he can be used back-to-back days with the guaranteed rest coming, but, most of all, I loved stepping on the A’s throats. End the game and get the win. Don’t get cute and try to steal outs with a lesser reliever.
Here are the box score, video highlights, updated standings, and postseason odds. Here’s our Bullpen Workload page. The Yankees and Athletics will wrap up this three-game series/AL Wild Card Game preview Wednesday night. That’s not a getaway day. It’s another 10pm ET start. Luis Severino and Mike Fiers will be on the mound. Decent chance that’ll be the AL Wild Card Game pitching matchup too.