Boy that extra rest sure does Masahiro Tanaka some good. He was at his best last night, pitching 7.2 shutout innings and leading a better rested and better time zone adjusted lineup to an easy victory in the second game of this White Sox series.
There were no long stretches out consecutive outs or massive strikeout totals, but Tanaka was completely in control from the get go last night. The White Sox did generate a few opportunities with 2 on and nobody out in the 2nd and 6th innings, but Tanaka made his pitches and neutralized the threats. He had all 4 pitches working last night and he was using them whenever he felt like it to keep hitters guessing. No runs, no walks, 6 strikeouts, 103 pitches. What more can you ask for from your ace?
Lefties have given the Yankees problems for years now, but they had no issues squaring up Carlos Rodon last night. They tagged him for 12 hits and 6 runs in 5 innings and there was variety to the offense. They got 2 in the second on an error and a Carlos Beltran ribbie single, 2 in the 3rd on a 2-run dinger by Chase Headley, a run in the 4th on a Mark Teixeira double, and another in the 5th on a solo shot by Austin Romine.
By the time the game got to late innings, it was already over. But that didn't stop the Yankees from pouring it on. Back-to-back doubles by Rob Refsnyder and Aaron Hicks brought home 2 runs in the 8th, and Mark Teixeira hit a sac fly to cap a 9th inning rally and put the 9th Yankee run on the board. The recently called up Chasen Shreve came on to do the mop-up duties and got the final 4 outs without issue.
- I'm not a big All-Star Game roster complaint guy. I think it's easy to make a case for about 50 players in each league and there's always going to be snubs because of that. And I know he wouldn't pitch in the game anyway with how he's lined up, but if you don't think Masahiro Tanaka has been one of the best 3-5 starting pitchers in the AL so far this season, you don't know baseball. Dude was fantastic last night.
- 20 hits for the team, a season high. They hit 7 doubles to go with the 2 homers and 7 of the starters had multiple hits. Every player in the starting lineup had at least 1.
- 3-5 night for Beltran, putting him up to .302/.341/.571 on the year. A much deserved ASG selection and somebody who should not be in a Yankee uniform when that game rolls around next week.
- A homer and a double for Romine and his quietly solid season continues.
- 2 straight games with a homer for Headley.
- Good to see Shreve back and pitching effectively. The middle relief situation hasn't gotten any better while he was out, so the opportunity is still there for him to earn some important innings.