Well that was an interesting way to win a game. The Yankees looked like they were going to cruise to a second straight victory after going up 6-0 early. But Masahiro Tanaka's struggles to throw the ball anywhere but the middle of the plate continued and the Astros came storming back before some late-game heroics by the offense pulled the Yanks back ahead for good. The Yanks have been beasts in the 1st inning this year and they kept that trend going yesterday. A leadoff double by Brett Gardner and back-to-back walks loaded the bases with nobody out. After Mark Teixeira popped out to first, Brian McCann took a hanging 1-0 changeup from Houston starter Brett Oberholtzer and crushed it into the right field seats for a grand slam. Oberholtzer left another change up to Chris Young with Gardner on first in the 2nd inning and Young hit it for a 2-run home run. Just like that, 6 runs on the board before 6 outs were recorded.
And then Tanaka began to give it all back. The Astros put 2 on the board with Chris Carter RBI double and George Springer RBI single in the bottom of the 2nd. Carter turned to the long ball for the third run in the bottom of the 4th, and things got really ugly in the 5th. Tanaka walked Springer to start the inning, left a 2-0 fastball up to Carlos Correa and watched it leave the yard, and got taken deep to left by little Jose Altuve just 2 pitches later. 6-0 lead turned into a 6-6 tie game.
Enter the top of the order again. Gardner walked to start the top of the 8th, Young reached on an error, and Teix came through with a 2-run double to deep left field to put the Bombers back on top. A Chase Headley insurance solo shot in the 9th and more ace work by the top half of the bullpen and the Yanks managed to avoid what would have been a bad loss.
- That's 6 home runs allowed in 2 starts for Tanaka, and even I'll admit that that's cause for concern. He's throwing a lot of pitches that don't move at all, they just hover over the middle of the plate, and that's very unlike him. If it's something mechanical, he needs to get it figured out soon. 3 homers a game is no good.
- Bullpen: 4 IP, 3 H, 2 BB, 0 R, 7 K. That'll make up for a bad start.
- Gardner had 3 hits and 3 R scored. McCann had 2 hits and 4 RBI. That's how you draw it up for those spots in the order.
- Strange moment in the 2nd when Oberholtzer threw at A-Rod after giving up the home run to Young. Not sure what he was trying to do, but he was justifiably ejected from the game and then sent down to Triple-A after.
- Not for nothing, but the Yanks could use a good start from Big Mike today. Some of those top bullpen guys are probably going to be unavailable.