Yankees lose battle of the bullpens, fall 2-1 to Blue Jays in series opener

Blah, what a gross game. Hold the high-powered Blue Jays to two runs in ten innings and still lose? Gross. Can’t think of another way to describe it. The offense will be fine, slumps happen, but limiting Toronto to two runs and losing a battle of the bullpens is rough. This the kind of game the Yankees were designed to win. Friday’s final score was 2-1.

The knuckleball is unAmerican. (Presswire)
The knuckleball is unAmerican. (Presswire)

Why Do You Hate Me, Offense?
Remember when the Yankees scored 90 runs in a ten-game span recently? As in last week? That was really cool. Well they’ve now scored four runs in their last three games, which is decidedly less cool. To put it another way, the pitching staff has allowed five runs in the last three games and the Yankees lost two. At home. To division rivals. What’s that word again? Gross? Yeah that works. Anyway, I’m not really sure how I want to recap Friday’s one-run attack, so I’m just going to list some points and we can go from there.

Patience, anyone? The Yankees saw 21 total pitches in their final three offensive innings. They even had two runners reach base, only to have both immediately erased on double play balls. The Yankees sent nine men to the plate in those last three innings and five of the at-bats were over within two pitches. Also, after forcing R.A. Dickey to throw 59 pitches in the first three innings, he did not have to throw more than 16 pitches in any of the next four innings. The Yankees started swinging at everything.

Blown chances. The Yankees could have broken this game open in the early innings. The problem was they kept getting all their base-runners with two outs. Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius singled with two outs in the second — they managed to avoid being tagged out during a hilarious rundown as well — but Stephen Drew flew out. Alex Rodriguez walked and Mark Teixeira singled with two outs in the third, then Brian McCann grounded out. The Yankees only had two at-bats with runners in scoring position and those were them. The opportunities were there but they were limited because no one got on base with less than two outs.

Stolen bases. Earlier this week I wrote a post about the Yankees not stealing bases and explaining why it wasn’t a big deal. They were still scoring a ton of runs at the time. But, in that same post, I noted the best time for the Yankees to employ the running game was in the late innings of a close game, like this one. Gregorius reached on a single in the seventh and never tried to steal. Brett Gardner singled leading off the eighth, didn’t budge, and A-Rod grounded into a double play. Beltran singled with one out in the ninth, Chris Young pinch-ran but didn’t actually run, and Headley grounded into a double play. (It was rather a rather spectacular 5-4-3 double play. The Jays deserve props for that one.) When the game is close like that and you’d got speedy runners on base, try running. Just once. You’re only looking for one run that late in the game. (Also, why was Young pinch-running and not pinch-hitting against the lefty Brett Cecil?)

Slumpin’. How much longer must we endure Stephen Drew? He went 0-for-4 on Friday with two weak ground outs and two weak pop-ups (surprise!), and is now up 322 plate appearances of 75 wRC+ ball on the season. It was cool when Drew hit for those two of three weeks last month, but clearly that was just a mirage. I’m crying uncle here. Enough. Also, Jacoby Ellsbury went 0-for-5 and looked like he was swinging blindfolded. Thursday night’s go-ahead home run was awesome! But otherwise Ellsbury’s been pretty terrible since coming back from the DL.

I think that about covers it. The Yankees scored their lone run on a Teixeira solo homer in the second inning. It was a total Yankee Stadium cheapie — all three runs in this game were scored on cheap wall-scraping homers — that had to be reviewed because it hit a fan who may have been reaching over the wall. That wasn’t the case and it was correctly called a home run. Other than that … did the Yankees even hit anything beyond bloop distance? It seemed like every ball in play against Dickey was a pop-up. Not much hard contact at all.

Nate the Great. (Presswire)
Nate the Great. (Presswire)

Two Runs, Ten Innings
The pitching staff gets no blame for Friday’s loss. They held the best offense in baseball to two cheap solo home runs in ten innings. I’d sign up for that in all three games this weekend if possible.

Nathan Eovaldi was the star of the show, especially after the shaky first inning in which he allowed (in order) a near-homer, a homer, a walk, and a double. He was able to escape the second and third with one out situation without allowing another run, then cruised into the seventh inning. Eovaldi allowed just the one run on five hits and two walks in 6.1 innings. He was outstanding. Nate’s been spectacular since the clunker in Miami.

Eovaldi’s night ended because of some defensive stupidness. Teixeira couldn’t reel in a throw from Drew — Teixeira had to stretch for it, but it did hit him in the glove, so… — and Headley bobbled a slow grounder that was probably going to be an infield single anyway with the speedy Kevin Pillar running. Eovaldi was yanked with two on and one out in the seventh. Justin Wilson struck out Ben Revere then Dellin Betances got Donaldson to ground out after walking Troy Tulowitzki. Inning over.

Wait, Who’s Pitching?
After Dellin’s escape act in the seventh, he pitched around a leadoff single in the eighth to hand the ball over the Andrew Miller in the ninth. Miller allowed a leadoff single and then retired the next three batters with relative ease. He threw six total pitches, yet when the game went to the tenth, Miller was removed and the rookie Brandon Pinder came in to face Donaldson and Jose Bautista.

Why was Miller taken out of the game after throwing only six pitches? Who knows. He did pitch Thursday, throwing 17 pitches, so maybe that was it. Or perhaps Girardi decided to take advantage of the six-pitch inning and save him for Saturday knowing Betances won’t be available after throwing 40 pitches the last two days. If that’s what happened … yeeesh. Gotta prioritize the game in front of you, right? Who knows what could happen tomorrow. You could be up nine runs, or down 17 runs, or little green aliens could come down in spaceships and enslave us all. Who knows?

Girardi elected to go to Pinder in the tenth, and any time you can use the kid who’s been on the Triple-A shuttle all season against two legitimately great hitters in an important intra-division game, you have to do it. Donaldson lined out to short, then Pinder put a two-strike fastball on a tee for Bautista, and he hit it out of the park for the deciding home run. What a weird decision. Was Adam Warren not available? Probably not since the threw 41 pitches Wednesday. But Bryan Mitchell? He’s still out therein the bullpen. Why Pinder before him? Bah. What a weird decision. I do not understand.

(Presswire)
(Presswire)

Leftovers
The Yankees had eight hits total — two each by Gardner, Teixeira, and Gregorius, and one each by Carlos Beltran and Headley. Beltran and A-Rod drew the walks. The Yankees struck out only four times as a team, so that’s good, the ball was in play all night, but they also averaged only 3.65 pitches per plate appearances. They were swinging at everything.

Really can’t say enough about Eovaldi. He threw 33 pitches in that stressful first inning and didn’t throw more than 16 pitches in any inning thereafter. Know how Yankee fans were complaining they weren’t hitting Dickey? Blue Jays fans were complaining they weren’t hitting Eovaldi. Nasty Nate has a 2.42 ERA in his last nine starts dating back to the Miami game, and a 3.79 ERA in his last 14 starts, including the Miami game.

And finally, the Yankees have now homered in 13 straight games, their longest such streak since August 2009. They went deep in 14 straight games that year.

Box Score, WPA Graph & Standings
Here are the box score and video highlights for this game. You can also check out the up to the minute standings and postseason odds. We have Bullpen Workload and Announcer Standings pages as well. Now here’s the loss probability graph:


Source: FanGraphs

Up Next
The Yankees and Blue Jays will play the second game of this three game series Saturday afternoon. Ivan Nova and David Price will be the pitching matchup. Head over to RAB Tickets if you want to catch that game or Sunday’s game at the ballpark.

Vintage Sabathia, Ellsbury’s late homer give Yankees 2-1 win over Red Sox

The game was a little closer than I think we all would have liked, but the Yankees were able to grab a 2-1 win over the Red Sox in their series finale Thursday night. The Bombers are now 8-0-1 in their last nine series, dating back to the series in Anaheim at the end of June. Pretty, pretty good.

Angry CC is the best CC. (Getty)
Angry CC is the best CC. (Getty)

Cy Sabathia
Okay, maybe calling him Cy Sabathia is a bit too much, but CC Sabathia turned in his best start of the season by Game Score (67) on Thursday. He allowed just one run on three singles and three walks in six innings, striking out eight. Sabathia hadn’t struck out that many batters in any of his previous 13 starts. He had four 1-2-3 innings and scrunched the six base-runners into the other two innings, including two singles and two walks in the fifth.

That fifth inning was by far the Red Sox’s best chance to put up a crooked number against Sabathia, who has been prone to crooked numbers this year. It started with a one out single by Ryan Hanigan and started to spiral out of control from there. Sabathia walked the awful Jackie Bradley Jr., served up a dinky ground ball single to Rusney Castillo to drive in a run — Didi Gregorius probably should have at least knocked the ball down to keep it on the field, but alas — then walked Xander Bogaerts to load the bases with two outs.

I was calling for the bullpen at that point and I know many of you were too. We’ve seen this movie before. The ending sucks. Joe Girardi opted to stick with Sabathia and the big lefty rewarded his manager by striking out David Ortiz to strand all three runners. Sabathia went full Joba after the strikeout:

CC Sabathia David Ortiz

Sabathia has not been good this year, he’ll be the first one to tell you that, but man, you can’t question the dude’s compete level. That’s a full season’s worth of frustration coming out right there. I still love Sabathia and it pains me to see him to pitch the way he has this year. That strikeout right there was pretty damn awesome.

Anyway, here’s something cool: PitchFX says Sabathia averaged 92.9 mph with his fastball and topped out at 94.7 mph. I mean, what!? The last time his fastball averaged at least 92.9 mph in a game was September 2013, in his third to last start of that season. The last time he threw a pitch at 94.7 mph or better was again in September 2013, in his second to last start of the year. I don’t know what caused the velocity spike, but hopefully it’s not just a one start blip. Those extra few miles an hour mean a lot to Sabathia. Either way, he did a helluva job Thursday night.

(Getty)
(Getty)

Two Is Enough
The Yankees scored their first run the same way they’ve scored many other runs this year, by relying on the duo of Brett Gardner and Alex Rodriguez. Gardner laced a two-out single to center then came around to score on A-Rod‘s double to left field. Alex worked a great seven-pitch at-bat and fouled off some tough put-away sliders. Nice little quick strike two-out run. Good hitters will do that.

A-Rod’s double gave the Yankees a 1-0 lead in the third inning and, after the Red Sox knotted the game up in the fifth, Jacoby Ellsbury untied it in the seventh with a solo homer into the second deck in right field. It was no cheapie. Eduardo Rodriguez pitched pretty well in this game but man, he made an awful pitch to Ellsbury, leaving a flat slider right out over the plate in a 2-1 count. Good hitters are supposed to hammer a pitch like that, and while Ellsbury has been struggling big time of late, there’s still a good hitter in there somewhere. Hopefully the homer helps get him out of his slump.

Of course, the Yankees had a golden opportunity to break the game open in the fifth thanks to consecutive singles by Brendan Ryan and Ellsbury leading off the inning. Gardner bunted them over, which I hated for a few reasons, include the fact that A-Rod was likely to be intentionally walked as the next batter. Sure enough, the Red Sox walked Alex. The bunt took the bat out of the hands of one of the team’s very best hitters in a tie game. Blah. (For the record, I think Gardner bunted on his own.)

The intentional walk loaded the bases with one out for Mark Teixeira, and hey, that’s still a pretty good situation. Unfortunately Teixeira popped a 2-0 pitch up in foul territory, then lefty masher Chris Young popped up the first pitch he saw to end the inning. Blah. That felt like a blown opportunity that would come back to bite the Yankees. Thank goodness it didn’t. That was not a fun inning.

Awkward hand-to-glove high-five. (Getty)
Awkward hand-to-glove high-five. (Getty)

Leftovers
Andrew Miller made things unnecessarily interesting in the ninth — he gave up a two-strike single to the lefty hitting Travis Shaw, then walked Bradley on four pitches (!) to put the tying run in scoring position — but eventually nailed down his 24th save in 24 chances. Dellin Betances struck out one in the eighth and Justin Wilson struck out the side in the seventh. The bullpen threw ten scoreless innings in the series.

Ellsbury and A-Rod each had two hits while Gardner had his lone single. The rest of the lineup? They went 1-for-19 (.053) with a walk. Zoinks. Teixeira drew the walk and Ryan had the base hit. Only eight base-runners on the night, including an 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position. Remember though, first base is scoring position with A-Rod at the plate. He proved it in the third inning.

Sabathia got into it with home plate umpire Rob Drake over a non-strike call in the fourth inning. Drake walked out to the mound to talk to Sabathia because apparently he didn’t like that CC took his time walking around the mound after the missed call. Whatever.

And finally, Ellsbury now has five home runs on the season, including four since coming back from his knee injury. Two of ’em are off Rodriguez. He got him Thursday and once at Fenway Park right before the All-Star break.

Box Score, WPA Graph & Standings
Here are the box score and video highlights, and here are the updated standings and postseason odds. Also make sure you check out our Bullpen Workload and Announcer Standings pages. Now here’s the win probability graph:


Source: FanGraphs

Up Next
The Blue Jays are coming to the Bronx for a pretty big three-game weekend series. They’re gunning for the top spot in the AL East, no doubt about it. Nathan Eovaldi will take on R.A. Dickey in the series opener Friday night. Check out RAB Tickets if you want to catch that game or either of the two games this weekend live at the Stadium.

Severino sharp in debut but Yankee bats falter in a 2-1 lost to the Red Sox

So we’ve been looking forward to this game for a while. Luis Severino showed a lot of the promise that he’s shown in minors with five solid innings in the books. However, the offense was mostly silent against the knuckleballer Steven Wright and their ninth inning rally didn’t come to much fruition – the result was a tough 2-1 loss to the Red Sox.

Sevvy Baby

On his first ML pitch ever, Severino caught the inside corner with a 94 mph fastball against Brock Holt. He induced a grounder to first against Holt. Against the next batter, Xander Bogaerts, Severino got a call on the 3-2 count cutter for strike three. A grounder and then a strikeout, progress!

In the second, he got first two easy outs against Hanley and Sandoval. Against Napoli, Severino induced a grounder to Headley and the third baseman completely botched the throw. Napoli reached second as a result and De Aza drove him in on a big double to right. 1-0 Red Sox. Welcome to the majors, Luis.

Severino’s third was quite nice – he struck out Bradley Jr. and Holt and popped out Bogaerts. In the fourth inning, with a 2-0 count, Severino missed the spot on the outside corner and left a fastball up the middle for David Ortiz… and the Red Sox slugger missed none of it. Ortiz hit it way deep into the bleachers (441 ft – the second longest dinger in YS3 this year) for a solo homer. 2-0 Red Sox. That was the only major mistake Severino made all night. In the fifth, he had another nice three-up-three down inning (pop out from De Aza, grounder from Swihart and strikeout from Bradley Jr.). At the time, Severino’s pitch count reached 94 and Girardi replaced him with Warren for the sixth.

All in all – good debut from Severino. He went five innings, allowed only two hits (both were pretty big XBH’s though), one earned run and struck out seven. He showed that he can use any of his pitch in any count. Another impressive thing – he reached to two strikes against 14 out of 18 batters faced. I feel, as he pitches more in majors, he’ll figure ways to put them away more efficiently.

Silence of the Bats

Yankee hitters didn’t have much going on against Steven Wright tonight. Steven Wright! To be fair, it seemed like his knuckleball movement was on its game tonight. They struck out a good amount and made a lot of weak contacts. In the fifth inning, Didi Gregorius singled through the middle to break up the no-no.

Leading off the seventh, Carlos Beltran hit a solo homer to put the Yankees on board. 2-1 Red Sox. And that was about the only thing that the Yankees had going against Steven Wright. Eight innings, four hits, one run and nine strikeouts.

What made it scream more of “it’s not our night” was when Ellsbury grounded into double play in the eighth. With no out, John Ryan Murphy on first, Ellsbury hit a sharp grounder up to middle that deflected off of Wright’s leg and rolled easily to the shortstop Bogaerts. That was only the third GIDP of the season for Ellsbury. Welp.

Before tonight’s game, Wright had a 4.53 ERA and 5.24 FIP in 59.2 IP – that’s not good, but he did seem to have a lot of things going on tonight, which happens. Yeah, we could talk about Headley’s second-inning error that became one of the differences of the game but let’s also not forget that the bat didn’t do much.

Rally falls short

The Red Sox pitching staff really isn’t what it used to be but Koji Uehara is still a very good reliever (2.33 ERA/2.34 FIP before tonight’s game). Uehara came in the ninth to get a save. With one out, Teixeira hit a liner to right that Castillo dove and got to… after the ball bounced right in front of his glove. Initially, the first base umpire called it an out but they reversed it after replay.

During Beltran’s at bat, a wild pitch by Uehara let the pinch runner Chris Young advance to second, putting the runner in scoring position. Beltran ended up flying out to the center, failing to advance the runner (let alone drive him in). Headley followed it up with inducing a five-pitch walk. Girardi then summoned Brian McCann to pinch hit for Didi Gregorius. On the fifth pitch of the at-bat, McCann hit a flyball to center for a routine out. Game over, Red Sox win 2-1. Oh well.

Leftovers

After Severino’s departure, Adam Warren tossed three solid innings in relief. He allowed only one baserunner (a double by Sandoval in the seventh) and struck out two. I know that it’s good to have depths in bullpen but he could be one of the more consistent starters along with Eovaldi, I feel like.

Chasen Shreve, however, was not as reliable. After getting two outs, he allowed a double to Sandoval and intentionally walked Napoli to face Rusney Castillo. After a 7-pitch at-bat, Shreve walked Castillo and had to face Swihart with bases loaded. Fortunately for New York, Shreve struck out Swihart looking on the pitch no. 30 of the inning to get out of the trouble.

A Tanaka quality start and late-inning offense bring down the Red Sox 13-3

A bit of a nail-biter into a laugher into a hurry: the Yankees offense exploded in the sixth and seventh to blow out the Red Sox for a 13-3 win. The Yankees greeted Henry Owens – making his ML debut – with a first-inning run but were shut out the next four innings. Meanwhile, Masahiro Tanaka allowed three runs in six innings, which is decent but eh, it could have been a better start. But in the end, not a lot of people were complaining about the game as the Yankees offense exploded once again to completely flatten the opposing pitching.

Welcome to the bigs, Henry!

The Yankees struck first against LHP Henry Owens. In the first, with runners on first and second, Mark Teixeira squeaked an RBI grounder single up the middle to give the Yanks a 1-0 lead. Yankee hitters made the rookie lefty work from the get go – Owens threw 34 pitches in that frame (17 strikes, 17 balls).

For the next four innings, however, the Yankees didn’t really come up with much. They only had one baserunner (Chase Headley single in the second) and struck out four. Owens has been one of Red Sox’s top prospects for awhile so he’s not really projected to be a AAAA scrub. Unless if the Red Sox plan a massive trade to bring in an impact player, I don’t see him parting away from them anytime soon.

(Source: Getty)

A quality start

Tanaka looked solid for the first four innings. His fastball topped out at 95, his secondary stuff had good depth in general and his command was, well, there. In that time span, he allowed only one baserunner (the bloop double to Mike Napoli in the second that really shouldn’t have happened) and struck out three. Pretty, pretty good.

In the fifth, Napoli doubled again, and it was a legit one – a line drive to left field with one out. Alejandro De Aza then snuck a bunt and Tanaka couldn’t handle it. With runners on corners and one out, Blake Swihart singled to tied the game and Jackie Bradley Jr. followed it up with a sac fly to give Boston a 2-1 lead.

In the seventh, with the Yankees then leading 4-2, Tanaka allowed a solo homer to Pablo Sandoval on the ninth pitch of at-bat. Dingers plaguing Tanaka again! Joe Girardi immediately pulled him out for Justin Wilson. Honestly, I thought Tanaka had a much better showing than in Texas last week and this was one of the better starts of his up-and-down 2015 season. If it weren’t for a botch bunt grounder in fifth, I feel his line would have looked better.

The highlight of his start, in my opinion, came in the sixth when he snagged a David Ortiz liner right above his head and doubled up Hanley Ramirez for a double play. Nifty.

Dingers! (Source: Getty)

Late runs

Entering the bottom sixth, Henry Owens was holding on his own against the Yankee offense, having allowed only a run in five solid innings. In the next two innings, New York would score twelve runs combined against him and the Red Sox bullpen. How’s that for a turnaround?

Anyways, bottom sixth, it took two hits (a Chris Young single and an A-Rod double) to knock Owens out of the game. John Farrell brought in Robbie Ross Jr. to face Mark Teixeira with no outs and runners on second and third. Tex lined a single to left to tie the game and Brian McCann followed it up with a double to center to put the Yanks ahead 3-2. Carlos Beltran grounded out to bring Teixeira in, 4-2.

All heck broke loose in the seventh. As you can tell by the notion of a “nine-run inning”, a lot of things took place so I’m just going to leave this right here.

Jean Machi pitching for Boston BOS NYY
Castillo in right field. 3 4
Ellsbury safe at first on throwing error by shortstop Bogaerts. 3 4
Young walked, Ellsbury to second. 3 4
Rodriguez singled to center, Ellsbury scored, Young to second. 3 5
Breslow relieved Machí. 3 5
Teixeira struck out swinging. 3 5
McCann homered to right, Young and Rodriguez scored. 3 8
Beltrán doubled to deep right center. 3 8
Headley doubled to left, Beltrán scored. 3 9
Gregorius flied out to right. 3 9
Ryan walked. 3 9
Ellsbury singled to left, Headley scored, Ryan to third. 3 10
Ogando relieved Breslow. 3 10
Young homered to left, Ryan and Ellsbury scored. 3 13
Rodriguez walked. 3 13
Teixeira struck out swinging. 3 13
9 Runs, 6 Hits, 1 Errors

While most players were having fun, Teixeira became the one who struck out twice in a big inning. Bum!

Leftovers

In the second inning, Chris Young and Jacoby Ellsbury had a miscommunication on a Mike Napoli fly ball to deep left. Young should’ve gotten it but the ball dropped just shy of his glove. Fortunately for the Yankees, it was two outs and Napoli did not score but, come on.

Bottom seventh, Justin Wilson was working on Jackie Bradley Jr. with Rusney Castillo on first and two outs. On a 1-2 pitch, Castillo took off for second. McCann let Wilson’s 97 mph fastball roll behind him to allow Castillo to steal the base. And at that moment, Girardi didn’t waste any time taking Wilson out for Dellin Betances – which was quite unusual since it was a lefty pitcher facing lefty batter already. I guess Girardi wanted to go for the kill? Anyways, Betances ended up walking Bradley Jr. but struck out Brock Holt to get out of the mess.

Brandon Pinder hasn’t shown too much in terms of ML stats but man, I love that Yankees potentially have another future reliever that can throw in high-90’s. He’s had pretty solid strikeout and walk numbers in minors and he has a power stuff so I think he could be a solid arm that sticks around for awhile. We’ll see.

Box score, standings, highlights, WPA

Here’s tonight’s box score, updated standings, video highlights and WPA.


Source: FanGraphs


Yankees are back at it tomorrow night in Bronx against the Red Sox. Luis Severino makes his ML debut and you may have heard of him. Looking forward to it!

Yanks close ten-game road trip with 12-3 win over ChiSox


Source: FanGraphs

Solid finish to a successful road trip, I’d say. The Yankees walloped the White Sox 12-3 on Sunday afternoon to close out the ten-game trip with a 6-4 record. They scored 78 runs in the ten games. That’s good! They also allowed 53 runs. That’s not so good. Let’s recap the win:

  • One Run Early: The Yankees had a lead two pitches into the game. Jacoby Ellsbury hit a leadoff home run against Jeff Samardzija, a long shot just to the left field side of dead center. Didn’t think Ellsbury had that kind of pop. The Yankees are up to 91 first inning runs on the season, 16 more than any other team. They’re on pace for 142 first inning runs this year. The record is 147 by the 2000 Cardinals.
  • Blown Open: The score remained 1-0 until the fourth inning, when the Yankees blew things open with five in the fourth and three more in the fifth. The fourth inning rally started with a Brian McCann bloop single that should have been caught — it dropped between three fielders. A walk (Carlos Beltran), a single (Chase Headley), a two-run double (Didi Gregorius), a single (Stephen Drew), a sac fly (Ellsbury), and a two-run single (Brett Gardner) followed. Mark Teixeira homered and Drew doubled in two in the fifth. Gardner’s hit was the big blow. Two outs, two strikes, and he turned a 4-0 lead into a 6-0 lead.
  • Live Arm: Ivan Nova put to rest any concerns about his “arm fatigue” on Sunday. He held the White Sox to one garbage time run — the Yankees were up 9-0 at the time — in six innings, striking out seven and getting nine more outs on the ground. For the first time since his first start back, it was vintage Nova. He looked sharp. The rotation has been a bit of a mess of late. It was nice to see someone stop the bleeding, so to speak.
  • Bullpen: Good time for Chase Shreve to have a rough outing. He allowed two solo homers (to righties) and a double in two-thirds of an inning. Hopefully he got it all out of his system. The just called up Branden Pinder recorded four drama-less outs and Andrew Miller retired the side in the ninth on five pitches. Miller had pitched only twice in the past ten days and has been a bit rusty since coming off the DL, so it was a good time to get him some work.
  • Leftovers: Drew tripled in two more runs in the seventh. He went 3-for-5 on the afternoon to raise his batting average to .19858. Almost over the Mendoza line! … Gregorius went 2-for-4 with a walk and is up to an 82 wRC+ on the season. The league average shortstop has an 82 wRC+ in 2015. Progress! … and finally, Nova was hit in the right hand by a foul ball while in the dugout in the fifth inning. The trainers checked him out, he went back into the game, and showed no ill-effects. Phew!

Here are the box score, video highlights, updated standings, and postseason odds. Here are our Bullpen Workload and Announcer Standings pages. The Yankees have an off-day Monday and will opening a three-game series with the Red Sox at Yankee Stadium on Tuesday night. Masahiro Tanaka and rookie southpaw Henry Owens will be the pitching matchup. Owens will be making his MLB debut.

Melky’s three-run homer helps sink the Yankees 8-2 in Chicago

Summarizes Yankees’ night (Source: Getty)

So that was pretty uneventful. After busting the White Sox pitching staff Friday night, the offense couldn’t repeat it against Johnny Danks and the Chicago bullpen. Bryan Mitchell, tonight’s spot starter, was tagged for four earned runs and Diego Moreno came back to Earth by allowing another four runs in relief. Meh. Not really a banner night for the Bombers. It was largely a very forgettable match. It’s also a Saturday night so let’s go with bullet points.

  • Spotty start: Bryan Mitchell’s second career ML start was a mixed bag. His stuff looked pretty good – fastball went up to the 96-97 range, the cutter was cutting and the curveball made the Sox hitters foolish at times. However, when he mislocated, he gave up some loud contact. All in all, Mitchell gave up seven hits – three of them extra base hits – and four earned runs in four innings pitched. He did strike out five, thanks to his explosive stuff, but when you give up a big homer to Alexei Ramirez (whose OPS climbed to .603 after tonight’s match) on a fastball up, then there’s some work to be done.
  • 0-for-13: That, my friends, is what the top five hitters in the lineup did tonight. You can’t really have lack of production from the big guys and expect to get a win. To be fair, each one of them (except for Brett Gardner) earned a walk, but then again, they also combined for eight strikeouts. Which means that they struck out more than half of the time. No bueno. The bottom of the lineup pretty much accounted for most of the offense and they would’ve scored more if Didi Gregorius‘s long fly ball didn’t get caught by Avisail Garcia right over the fence. That would have made it a 3-2 game instead of 2-1 and who knows how the match would have changed had Garcia not caught it? Oh well.
  • 12-out bullpen: Diego Moreno isn’t really the seventh or eighth-inning guy that they need to monitor innings and he did a chunk of the dirty work tonight. After tossing 5.1 no-hit innings earlier this week, Moreno was much more brittle tonight – allowing four earned runs in three innings while striking out none. The decisive blow for New York came in the fifth when Moreno allowed a three-run HR to our old friend Melky Cabrera – the dinger put the game out of reach at 6-1 and Yanks did not come any close to tying it up. Nick Rumbelow came in the ninth and tossed a scoreless frame.
  • Leftovers: Yankees scored their first run on that woulda-been-homer sac fly by Didi Gregorius in the third. Because Johnny Danks doesn’t have the best control (allowed four walks and three hits), the offense had several chances to drive in more earlier but came up empty-handed (1-for-6 with RISP). New York got another run with one out in the ninth with Brian McCann‘s homer and that was pretty much it. 8-2 is the final score.

Here’s tonight’s box score, updated standings, video highlights and WPA. Enjoy the rest of your Saturday night. Tomorrow, it’s a day game matchup between Ivan Nova and Jeff Samardzija (got the spelling right on first try!)

Teixeira homers twice again, Yanks pound White Sox 13-6


Source: FanGraphs

The Yankees can’t score on the road, they said. The Yankees are built for Yankee Stadium, they said. Well, that last part is true, the Yankees are built for Yankee Stadium, but can’t score on the road? They’ve now scored 64 runs in eight games on the road trip. The Yankees clobbered the White Sox 13-6 in Friday night’s series opener. Good win. Solid. Anyway, it’s Friday night and my brain is fried following the trade deadline, so let’s recap with bullet points:

  • MVPTEX: For the second straight day, Mark Teixeira clubbed two home runs, including a second inning grand slam that pretty much put the game to bed. He tacked on a two-run shot in the fourth. Teixeira went 3-for-4 with the two homers and two walks. He’s absolutely locked in right now. On everything. It’s wonderful. Oh, and by the way, that was the team’s 42nd grand slam since 2010, the most in baseball. The Red Sox are second with … 28!
  • 5.2 & Fly: Nathan Eovaldi picked a good night for his worst start in a while. Eovaldi allowed three runs, including two on a Jose Abreu homer when the score was already lopsided, but managed only 5.2 innings. And he needed 118 pitches to do that. Eovaldi’s been solid for a while now, but he rarely gives the Yankees length. Joe Girardi pushed Eovaldi as far as possible because he didn’t want to tax his bullpen again, but he couldn’t push him any further. Hopefully the bullpen holds up until rosters expand. These guys are being asked to get too many outs.
  • Rest of the Offense: The 3-4-5 hitters went a combined 8-for-10 with four doubles, two homers, and five walks. Those guys didn’t make their first out until their 12th plate appearance. That’ll do just fine, thanks. Chris Young, Chase Headley, and John Ryan Murphy all had multiple hits as well. Things went so well that even Brendan Ryan went 3-for-6. Of course, he struck out against Adam LaRoche in the ninth, so maybe it wasn’t all good. The Yankees had a .509 OBP as a team.
  • Leftovers: Adam Warren replaced Eovaldi and allowed two runs in 2.1 innings. He was their most consistent starter when he was sent back to the bullpen, and now here he is mopping up games with a huge lead twice in one week. What a waste … Nick Goody allowed a run in the ninth … Dustin Ackley took over in right field in the late innings and went 0-for-2 in his Yankees debut … and finally, Teixeira went deep from both sides of the plate for the 14th time in his career, which is a new MLB record. He broke a tie with Nick Swisher. How about that?

Here are the box score, video highlights, updated standings, and postseason odds. Also make sure you check out our Bullpen Workload and Announcer Standings pages. The Yankees and ChiSox continue this three-game series Saturday night. Bryan Mitchell figures to start with Diego Moreno backing him up. John Danks will be on the mound for Chicago.