Well, at least the bullpen didn’t blow it? The Yankees were completely outclassed by the Astros in Sunday’s series finale and will fly back home with an 8-1 loss fresh in their minds. They were outscored 12-1 in the final ten innings of the series. The Yankees are 5-14 in their last 19 games and have gone from four games up in the AL East to three games back. An impressive free fall, this is. It’s Sunday and it’s a holiday weekend, so let’s recap this one with bullet points:
- Sevy Struggles: Seven extra-base hits allowed — including four to the first eight batters — in 5.1 innings is pretty much all you need to know about Luis Severino‘s afternoon. Even the outs were loud. The ‘Stros tattooed Severino for six runs on nine hits and one walk and one hit batsman in 5.1 innings, and six of those eleven baserunners reached in two-strike counts. Pretty annoying. Severino against the Astros in 2017: 10.13 ERA. Severino against everyone else in 2017: 2.93 ERA.
- Lots Of Pitches, No Runs: The Yankees forced Astros starter Mike Fiers to throw 105 pitches in four innings (!). They scored zero runs. The Yankees had two runners on base in each of the first three innings, including twice with only one out. The batters after that second runner reached in those innings went a combined 0-for-5 with three strikeouts and an infield pop-up. The one guy who managed to hit the ball out of the infield in those spots, Brett Gardner, fell about a foot short of a three-run home run. Alas.
- Bullpen Mismatch: As if there were any doubt, the bullpen put the game completely out of reach after Severino. Tyler Webb and Domingo German combined to allow Severino’s inherited runner to score plus two runs of their own in 2.2 innings. The Astros bullpen: 5 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 6 K. I can just picture Joe Girardi laughing in the dugout when Chris Devenski entered in the fifth inning. “Those fools, you can’t use your best reliever outside his assigned inning!”
- Leftovers: The no shutout streak lives! A double by Chase Headley and a single by Chris Carter got the Yankees on the board in the ninth. The Yankees and Nationals are still the only teams to score in every game so far this season. The last time the Yankees went this deep into the season without being shutout was 1988 (83 games) … Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez: 4-for-7 with a walk. The rest of the Yankees: 2-for-25 (.080) with four walks, and those two hits were the Headley double and Carter single in the ninth … Clint Frazier went 0-for-3 with a walk and a double play grounder, though his at-bats were all good. Worked the count and swung at the right pitches. He saw 25 total pitches in his four plate appearances.
Here are the box score, video highlights, and updated standings. The road trip is over and the Yankees are coming back to the Bronx for a six-game homestand against the Blue Jays and Brewers to close out the first half. Masahiro Tanaka and Marcus Stroman are the scheduled starters for Monday night’s series opener. RAB Tickets can get you in the door for any of the six games on the homestand. I hear booing is cathartic.