This one wasn't good for the old run differential. Facing possible thunderstorms and tornado delays in the forecast, the Yankee instead fell victim to the Ranger bats. They beat up a scuffling Luis Severino pretty bad early and cruised out to a big lead that the Yankee offense was incapable of even denting.
So yeah, Severino. He looked pretty good through the first 2 innings. I thought he was settling in after a quick 2nd. But it unraveled for him pretty quickly with 2 outs in the bottom of the 3rd. The key play might have actually been a non-play. After Nomar Mazara singled and Adrian Beltre doubled to put runners on second and third, Joe Girardi called for an intentional walk of Prince Fielder to load the bases and face Ian Desmond. Severino did that and then unintentionally walked Desmond to force in a run. From there he proceeded to allow 4 more runs on 3 singles and a wild pitch in what ended up being a 43-pitch inning. Severino did not come out for the 4th.
That job went to Ivan Nova, and he proceeded to seal the win for the Rangers with 4 innings of 3-run ball. He didn't walk anybody, but he suffered from the same lack of command inside the strike zone that has hampered Severino and Michael Pineda in this first month of the season. Nova did allow Joe to save most of the rest of the 'pen from having to work in this one, but by the time he was out of the game it was 9-1 Rangers.
That 1 run came in the top of the 7th when the Yankees were able to string a walk and 2 singles together off of a tiring A.J. Griffin. That left them with 2 on and nobody out and they did not score another run in the inning, so at least the anomaly of the Yankees being an even remotely competent offensive baseball team didn't last long. They made Griffin look real good over the first 6 innings, hitting a lot of lazy fly balls and infield pop ups for easy outs. The one positive contributor was Ronald Torreyes, who had exactly 100% of the team's hits through 6 innings. The rest of the lineup hardly did anything.
This one was a stinker for sure, but the Yankees can still take the series with a win tonight. CC Sabathia will get the start against Martin Perez and Joe will have his bullpen horses ready at the end if CC can do enough to bridge them a lead.
- Line on Severino: 3 IP, 7 H, 6 ER, 2 BB, 1 K. He threw 74 pitches and only got 4 swinging strikes. I don't know what it is: the lack of a good secondary pitch, worse fastball command, or the league having a better approach against him after seeing him last year, or a little bit of everything. But Severino doesn't look like the same pitcher at all and he's got to work on changing something up. Personally I think it's the first problem more than anything. Severino throws everything hard and everything up. He needs to get that slider down at or below the knees more often and it needs to be sharper. If hitters don't even have to think about the low part of the zone, it makes it easier for them to hone in on the fastball up. Just my amateur armchair analysis.
- As for the intentional walk, I didn't like it. I know Joe does and I know Prince has killed the Yankees, but I think you have to let Severino pitch to him there. Loading the bases gives him even less margin for error in the next at-bat and Severino wasn't really commanding his fastball well last night. Whatever, binder gonna binder.
- Torreyes must be cursing re-signing with this bunch of noodle bats, huh? Guy was just out there by himself on the basepaths for the first 2/3 of the game. He should have sat down on the base like a little kid playing tee ball. I'm curious to see if Joe rides his hot bat and sits Chase Headley with how bad Headley is swinging the bat. I know a lot of people who would support that move.
- 2-hit night for Mark Teixeira, including the RBI single in the 7th. That's back-to-back 2-4 games for Teix and his 3rd multi-hit game during this current 5-game hitting streak. He's 9-20 in that span, bringing his season batting line up to .254/.375/.403.
- Chasen Shreve got tagged for another home run in the bottom of the 8th. That's 3 dingers for 3 runs in his last 2 appearances after only 3 hits in his first 6 scoreless appearances.