Three times is not a charm
The Yankees hit the trifecta in Tuesday’s loss to the A’s, losing their third straight game against their third different opponent in as many days (Twins, Mariners).
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was the first time they had lost three straight games to three different opponents on consecutive days since 1990, and the first time they did all that at home since September 1915!
Mark Teixeira drove in both of the Yankees runs with a first-inning single and a sixth-inning homer. The longball was the 351st of his career, tying Dick Allen for 89th on all-time list. It also moved him past Chili Davis and into sole possession of sixth place among switch hitters.
Hiroki Kuroda pitched his best game of the season, allowing just one run on two hits. It was his second straight start against Oakland giving up two hits or fewer, becoming only the second Yankee in the last 100 years with a streak like that against the A’s. David Cone had a three-start streak spanning the 1996 and 1997 seasons.
Four runs not enough
Another game… another lead… another bullpen meltdown… another loss for the Yankees on Wednesday night at the Stadium.
The Yankees’ bats finally broke through in the third inning with four runs, snapping their six-game streak of scoring three or fewer runs at home. It matched the longest such streak by the team since the DH rule was established in 1973.
Vidal Nuno labored through 4⅔ innings, allowing two runs on six hits before being removed after throwing 92 pitches. The early exit meant he was guaranteed to remain winless in seven career starts in the Bronx. He is now just the second Yankees pitcher in last 100 years to not record a win in his first seven career starts at home, along with Jim Beattie in 1978.
Nuno continued to struggle with the longball in the Bronx as he allowed his 10th homer of the season, all of which have come at home. His streak of seven straight home games allowing a home run to begin the season is tied for the second-longest such streak by a Yankee in the last century. The only pitcher with a longer streak is Jack McDowell, who started the 1995 season allowing a home run in his first eight games.
Rookie Jose Ramirez, pitching in his first major-league game, allowed the go-ahead homer by Josh Donaldson in the seventh inning and took the loss. He is the first Yankee to lose in his MLB debut as a reliever since Duane Pillette in 1949.
Yoenis Cespedes powered the A’s offense with three hits including two solo home runs. He became the first A’s left fielder with a multi-homer game versus the Yankees since Rickey Henderson in 1990.
Tanaka TimeThe Yankees avoided the sweep on Thursday afternoon thanks to another solid start from Masahiro Tanaka and just enough offense to beat the A’s, 2-1.
Tanaka once again was brilliant, allowing just one run in six innings for his 12th quality start in 12 career games. The only other pitcher since 1912 (when earned runs became official) to have 12 quality starts in his first 12 career games is the Expos’ Steve Rogers, who did it in each of his first 16 games in 1973.
The only other Yankees in the last 100 years to start a season with 12 quality starts in a row are Mike Mussina (12 in 2006) and Ron Guidry (15 in 1978).
For the first time in his career, however, he failed to strike out five batters. That snapped a streak of at least five strikeouts and three earned runs in 11 straight games, which was the longest such streak to start a career by any pitcher in the last 100 years.
Two runs was enough for the Yankees to win, and it also extended their streak of home games scoring fewer than five runs to nine, which is the longest by the team since an 11-game streak in 1991.