Yankees are Defining Themselves as a Team That Doesn’t Roll Over

With tonight’s 3-2 loss to the Houston Astros, the New York Yankees would fall to 21-11 on the season.  Michael Pineda made an early mistake giving up a 2 run home run in the First Inning and again giving up 1 run in the Fifth Inning, but otherwise looked really solid.  The lack of run support early, did him in for the loss.  On the other side, his dueling partner, Astros Pitcher Dallas Keuchel, was stellar through 6 innings only giving up 1 run while striking out 9.

One thing that has begun to stand out about this 2017 Yankees team is that they keep games close, and will always fight until the last out.  Outside of May 1st’s, 7-1 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays, I can’t think of a game off the top of my head where the Yankees were out of it completely.  As long as there are outs left to give in the Ninth Inning, this Yankees team remains a threat to the opposition.

Tonight in familiar fashion, the Yankees left runners in scoring position with the bases loaded in the 5th, only scoring one run on a Jacoby Ellsbury Special (catcher’s interference). In the 9th, down by 2, Aaron Hicks drew a walk, and Jacoby Ellsbury moved him over to 3rd with a single.  Ellsbury subsequently stole third becoming the tying run in scoring position.  Next up to bat, with 2 outs, Gary Sanchez singled to Left Field scoring Hicks and Ellsbury was on his way to the plate when the dream of a walkoff was ended.  The Astros outfielder made a perfect throw to home and Ellsbury was tagged out ending the game.

This 2017 Yankees team has shown time and time again that they are a team that has the confidence to remain calm even if down by multiple runs at any point during the game. They have pulled out a few comebacks in the past two weeks most memorably against the Orioles and Cubs, and if they can keep these going, there are sure to be many more exciting games heading forward in the 2017 season.

Yankees Overcome Early Pitching Struggles, Defeat Blue Jays 8-6

The New York Yankees would improve to 17-9 on the season after Wednesday night’s game against the Toronto Blue Jays.  After CC Sabathia gave up 6 runs in the first 2 innings, the Yankees Bats came alive to bail him out and the bullpen held the Blue Jays scoreless late to salvage the game.

Sabathia did not look good from the very start.  After giving up 4 runs in the 1st inning, he gave up 2 more in the 2nd.  Luckily he was able to settle down over the next few innings, and the Yankees pitching staff didn’t look back.  He would finish the game with 4 innings pitched, 7 hits, and 6 earned runs.  The bullpen would only give up 1 hit over the last 5 innings.

After being down by 4 runs in the first, the Yankees bats kept up with the Blue Jays from the start. After a Gardner single and a Hicks walk, Holliday smashed a 3 run home run to center field, the 300th of his career.

In the 3rd inning with the score 6-3, Starlin Castro would hit a bloop single to center field.  Next up, none other than Aaron Judge would blast a 2 run home run to center shaving the Blue Jays lead to 1 run.  That home run would be his 13th on the season, which leads the Major Leagues.

One thing that persisted throughout the game was the home-plate umpire’s lack of consistency in the strike zone.  In the 6th inning, Brett Gardner would get struck out looking at a pitch outside of the zone and would take his frustrations out on the dugout recycling bin.  Matt Holliday would also later get caught looking at a bad strike call for the 3rd out of the inning.  During Starlin Castro’s at bat in the 7th, Yankees’ Manager, Joe Girardi had had enough and subsequently let the umpire know his feelings on the matter.  He was tossed from the game of course.

Sparked by Girardi’s ejection, the rest of the Yankees’ scoring would occur in the bottom of the 7th.  It all began with an Aaron Judge single to left followed by a Chase Headley double down the right field line.  With 2 men in scoring position, Chris Carter would hit an inside pitch, breaking his bat, over the short stop’s outstretched glove which would score Judge from 3rd, tying the game.  Didi Gregorius would then pinch hit for Ronald Torreyes hitting a ground ball to the pitcher who was unable to make a timely throw to 1st for the out.  Headley would score on the play giving the Yankees the lead 7-6.  Brett Gardner would later draw a walk, and an Aaron Hicks walk with the bases loaded would score Chris Carter from 3rd plating the 8th Yankees’ run.

The Yankees head to Chicago to take on the Cubs in what looks to be a fantastic series this weekend.  The first game will begin Friday at 2:20pm.  It’ll be interesting to see if Judge can continue his hot streak and hit a few tape measure shots out of Wrigley.

 

Greg Bird With a Chance to Hit the Reset Button

To put it lightly, Greg Bird has not played well at all this season.  Through 72 at bats, Bird only has 6 hits, half of those coming in 1 game against the Cardinals on April 16th.  The rest of his at bats have been tough to watch at times; struggling to catch up with slow fastballs, and just simply swinging through pitches all over the zone.

For about 2 weeks now fans have been calling for him to be sent down to AAA to work out the kinks, but that would probably have had a negative impact on his psyche.  The ice Bird would put on his ankle after every game might tell a different story for his struggles.  As evidence from his lack of effort after grounding into a double play last night, it became clear to most that he was possibly struggling with a physical injury and not just a mental one.

This stint on the DL will allow Bird to rest his ankle and his mind.  The warm up games in AAA combined with rest will possibly work as a reset button on Bird’s 2017 season.  A win/win for both Bird and the Yankees.