Well, That Could Have Gone Better: Astros 6, Yankees 2

Okay, so the start of the 2014 season wasn’t so great.

CC Sabathia, who has a history of being awful on Opening Day (with the Yankees his ERA is north of 7 and overall it’s north of 5), continued that tradition with a terrible first two innings in which he gave up six runs, including two home runs. Thankfully, he settled down in the last four innings of his six inning outing and finished with six strikeouts and one walk.

I’m not sure what kind of adjustments he made between the second and third innings but whatever he did worked well and he looked like a different pitcher. Too bad it didn’t happen earlier in the game. Oh well!

The Yankee hitters were stymied by Scott Feldman of all people and they didn’t score until the Astros went to their bullpen in the eighth. They finally broke through thanks to a walk by Jacoby Ellsbury, a single by Derek Jeter, a groundout by Carlos Beltran that advanced both Ellsbury and Jeter and then RBI singles by Brian McCann and Mark Teixeira.

It looked like they might get something more going but Alfonso Soriano ended the inning with a double play.

It’s only the first game of 162 so let’s not freak out yet. And the Yankees haven’t been doing too well on Opening Day recently: They are 1-5 in their last six and have lost three straight.

The Bad Stuff:

  • Sabathia in the first two innings.
  • Alfonso Soriano had a bad game at the plate going 0-5 and leaving five guys on base.
  • They couldn’t get anything going offensively for most of the game.
  • The defense was frightening already and it’s only the first game of the season. Even the outfielders were having trouble.

The Good Stuff:

  • Both Brett Gardner and Derek Jeter were hit by pitches and they’re still alive.
  • It wasn’t exactly a high leverage situation but Dellin Betances came in struck out two of the three batters he faced in the seventh. He looked good. His line: 10 pitches, 9 strikes, 3 outs, 2 strikeouts, 1 ball, 0 hits
  • Vidal Nuno followed Betances with his own scoreless inning in the eighth where he struck out the side.
  • Teixeira’s wrist didn’t fall off and he hit the ball well a couple of times.
  • Jeter also collected hit #3,317 of his career in tonight’s game.
  • Carlos Beltran got the first hit for the Yankees in the fourth inning.
  • Brian McCann got the first RBI.
  • Brian Roberts had nothing to show for it but he hit the ball hard a couple of times (just at people) and he didn’t break anything as far as we know!

Again, it’s only the first game of the season and while it’s not so great losing to the Astros, games like this are going to happen from time to time. Let’s all just be happy that baseball is finally back.

Stacey is co-Editor-in-Chief of It's About The Money, co-host of the It's About The Money, Stupid podcast and is a monthly contributor to ESPN's SweetSpot Blog. She is a former contributor at Aerys Sports and High Heat Stats. She has contributed to group projects at Baseball: Past And Present and the Hall of Stats. Her work has appeared in USA Today's Sports Weekly and most recently, she wrote four pieces for Derek Jeter: Celebrating the Yankees' Captain Clutch, a magazine printed by i5 Publishing.

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