Game 92 Recap: Yankees 3 Orioles 2

Miller-Mac vs BAL

Courtesy of Getty Images

They made it!  It’s been a long battle to get there, but the Yankees finally reached the 10 games over .500 plateau last night with a close win over the division rival Orioles.  Once again it was the combination of just enough starting pitching, just enough offense, and a lockdown bullpen getting the job done.

The offense staked Nathan Eovaldi to a lead with a couple of early manufactured runs.  Jacoby Ellsbury hit a ground-rule double to lead off the bottom of the 1st, moved to third on a Brett Gardner sac bunt, and scored on an Alex Rodriguez sac fly.  A pair of singles by Brian McCann and Chris Young put them in business in the bottom of the 2nd, and Chase Headley doubled in a run to make it 2-0.

The Yankees failed to tack on more in that inning though, and Eovaldi walked a fine line in working 5 scoreless innings.  He stranded a leadoff walk in the 1st and worked around 2 to keep Baltimore off the board in the 5th.  …

Read more

Game 91 Recap: Yankees 2 Mariners 1

Teix HR vs SEA

Standard Teix message rates apply. Courtesy of the AP

Win the series.  Just win the series.  It’s all about winning series for the Yankees right now.  2 out of 3 while the rest of the AL East goes hot and cold will make it an easier stretch run, and it doesn’t matter how you get the W as long as you get it.  They got a rare stellar start from CC Sabathia this afternoon, and even though they didn’t do enough offensively to get him a win, they did just enough to come away with a team win and a series win.

It was a blast from the past for CC today.  He was pitching like he was feeling good after the extra rest, hitting 93 on his 4-seam fastball and sitting low 90s on his 4-seamer and sinker all day.  Seattle had a tough time squaring him up and didn’t generate much through 4 innings.  When the 5th came and the Mariners went back-to-back singles to lead it off, it looked like the one bad inning was coming.  …

Read more

Game 90 Quick Recap: SEA 4 NYY 3

Yesterday it was Kyle Seager going yard twice for all of Seattle’s runs.  Today it was Robinson Cano.  Yesterday those home runs weren’t enough to beat the Yankees, but today they were as the Mariners reversed last night’s decision and picked up a 4-3 win over the Bombers.

The first Cano homer didn’t take long at all.  Brad Miller singled to lead off the game and Cano came up with 1 on and 1 out looking to pull a first-pitch fastball.  He got one from Michael Pineda and did what he used to do all the time in Yankee Stadium to give his team a quick 2-0 lead.

The Yankees didn’t get much going against Hisashi Iwakuma early.  That changed in the bottom of the 4th when Mark Teixeira singled with 2 outs.  This brought Brian McCann to the plate and he got a hanging fastball from Iwakuma that he deposited over the wall for a game-tying 2-run homer.  But Seager led off the top of the 6th with a single and Cano got to Pineda again, yanking another 2-run homer into the right field seats.…

Read more

Game 89 Quick Recap: NYY 4 SEA 3

Sorry for the late recap.  I was out getting free t-shirts at the Brewer game and celebrating a little too hard post-game.  Part of that celebration was due to A-Rod’s game-winning home run for the Yanks, a big hit to save a second half-opening win over the Mariners.

If it wouldn’t have been for the existence of Kyle Seager, Masahiro Tanaka would have had a spotless performance last night.  Seager got to him for a solo home run in the 3rd to get Seattle on the board and a 2-run shot in the 5th to give them the lead.  Other than those 2 hits, Tanaka was on point last night.  7 innings, 5 hits, 3 runs, 2 walks, 7 strikeouts.  Probably not good enough for some NY sports writers, but plenty good enough for me.

The Yankees bookended their 4 runs with solo homers, Chris Young‘s to start things in the bottom of the 2nd and Alex Rodriguez‘s to pull back ahead in the 7th.  …

Read more

2015 MLB All-Star Game Recap: AL 6 NL 3

Teix ASG 2015

Arm sleeve game on a hundred thousand trillion. Courtesy of Getty Images

The whole thing was kind of a farce without A-Rod involved, but the American League and National League squared off last night in Cincinnati to decide whose league would unfairly be granted home field advantage in the World Series.  Thanks to some bookend power and a deep pool of devastating relievers, the AL was able to nab the win and grab that World Series advantage for the Yankees come October.

Mike Trout led off the game with an at-bat that screamed “I’m the best baseball player on the planet and nobody forget it.”  He fell behind NL starter Zack Greinke 0-2, took an outside fastball for a ball, then waited on another one and drove it the other way for a solo home run to right field.  It was almost like he was setting Greinke up for that from the start.  1-0 AL.

The NL manufactured a run in the bottom of the 2nd with a Paul Goldschmidt single, a throwing error, an advance to third on a groundout, and a 2-out RBI single by Jhonny Peralta to tie the game, and it looked like we were settling in for a low-scoring affair as Greinke and AL starter Dallas Keuchel gave way to the gaggle of top-tier arms waiting behind them.  …

Read more

Game 88 Recap: Yankees 8 Red Sox 6

Refs vs BOS

Somebody just earned himself a fancy new suit from Mr. Rodriguez. Courtesy of the AP

It’s gone a tad under the radar, but that’s 7 wins in 10 games and 3 straight series victories for the Yankees going into the All-Star break.  They closed out this road series in Boston with a hard fought and sloppily-finished victory today and head into the break with a 3.5 game division lead, 5 in the loss column.

Nathan Eovaldi got the ball this afternoon, and his outing was about as textbook Nathan Eovaldi as it could have been.  He worked around 1-out hits in each of the first 2 innings, but needed over 40 pitches to do so.  When the lineup turned over in the 3rd, the Red Sox hitters were keyed into what he was doing and he couldn’t put anybody away.  5 base hits in a 6-batter span, the last 2 in 2-strike counts, plated 3 Boston runs and gave them a brief 1-run lead.…

Read more

Game 87 Quick Recap: BOS 5 NYY 3

Last night’s game started the same way Friday’s did, with Alex Rodriguez smacking a 1st-inning home run to give the Yankees an early lead.  This game didn’t end the same way though, with the Sox getting to Ivan Nova and the Yankee offense never getting going in a series-evening loss.

Nova got through the 1st inning 1-2-3, but he was battling through almost every inning from there on out.  He needed a big double play to work around leadoff double-single in the 2nd, gave up multiple hits in the 3rd and 4th, and got hit for another double in the 5th.  The run against him in the 3rd wasn’t all his fault.  John Ryan Murphy threw a ball into center field to move Alejandro De Aza to third base and he scored on a groundout in the next at-bat.  The go-ahead runs in the 4th were all on Nova.  David Ortiz hit a leadoff on a meaty fastball and Hanley Ramirez followed up with a 2-run homer.…

Read more

Game 86 Quick Recap: NYY 5 BOS 1

Big Mike and Buchholz.  The pitching matchup was a really good one on paper last night.  Unfortunately for Boston only Big Mike was able to live up to that matchup, as they lost their ace early to an elbow injury.  The Yankees used that unexpected pitching change to grab a comfortable lead and ride Pineda’s strong start to a series-opening victory.

Pineda was sharp, even if he did have at least one runner on base all night.  The Sox put men on in each of the first 4 innings, but Pineda was always in control and shut them down with his strong fastball-slider combo.  Mookie Betts got to him for a solo homer in the 5th and that was the only black mark on Pineda’s line.  He struck out 6, didn’t walk a batter, and left with 2 outs in the 7th as Joe went to the ‘pen to face Betts again.

The top of the 4th was when the Yankees won the game.  …

Read more

Game 85 Recap: Yankees 6 Athletics 2

Tanaka vs OAK

A master at his craft. Courtesy of Getty Images

I said I wanted the Yankees to go at least 4-2 in these last two series before the break.  They got halfway there this afternoon with a series-clinching win over the A’s behind a strong start from Masahiro Tanaka and an All Star-caliber performance by 2015 American League All Star Brett Gardner.

Things didn’t look promising for Tanaka early.  He seemed to get rattled by a catcher’s interference call to start the top of the 2nd and gave up a double to Billy Butler in the next at-bat to tie the game at 1.  A walk and another double made it 2-1 Oakland and got the NY tabloid guys’ fingers ready to type out another “the sky is falling!!!” post on Tanaka for tomorrow morning.  The 2-seamer appeared to be the problem pitch, and Tanaka’s command in general seemed a tick off again.

And then he went on to retire the next 18 batters he faced in a row.  …

Read more