The Yankees flipped the script on what was shaping up to be a crummy weekend with last night's A-Rod-aided come-from-behind victory in Minnesota. They kept those good vibes rolling this afternoon, sans A-Rod, to beat the Twins again and rack up another 2-1 series victory. Nathan Eovaldi was today's starter, and for the first time in a while it felt appropriate and accurate to describe his performance as nasty. The Twins got to him in the 3rd for a solitary run on a pair of singles and an RBI groundout, but other than that they could do nothing. Eovaldi recorded 4 of his first 5 outs via the strikeout, then settled into a very efficient and dominant ground ball-heavy outing. He got multiple GB outs in every inning from the 4th through the 7th and pitched into the 9th for the first time this season. This was the first major step forward for Eovaldi in his development in a while, and it was a glance at the type of GB/K pitcher the Yankees envision him being for years to come.
Offensively, it was a slow start for the Yanks without their #3 hitter. They didn't do anything against Twins' starter Kyle Gibson over the first 4 innings. But they got a run in the 5th to tie the game on a Chase Headley solo home run, and they broke the game open with a 6-run 6th. They sent 9 men to the plate in the inning, recorded 3 singles, 2 walks, an RBI safety squeeze play by Didi Gregorius, and an exclamation point 2-run homer by Stephen Drew to take a comfortable 7-1 lead.
Eovaldi's leash was short in the 9th and he left after giving up a leadoff double to Miguel Sano. Justin Wilson allowed that run to score on a Trevor Plouffe single and didn't record an out, but no worry. Dellin Betances came on to take care of everything. Take another couple games off the magic number countdown. We're officially below 60 with a 7-game lead in the loss column.
- Headley went 2-4 with 2 R scored and 3 RBI. He's got at least 1 hit in 4 straight games and 13 hits/10 RBI in his last 10 games.
- Eovaldi's line: 8+ IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 11 GB outs. Threw exactly 100 pitches. Very well done. His numbers continue to get better since that disastrous outing against the Marlins.
- 2 hits and a walk for Brett Gardner. 0-5 with 2 Ks for Ellsbury.
- All 7 Yankee RBI came from the bottom 4 spots in the lineup. Go figure.