Game 118: A unnecessarily stressful win

The Yankees won another one today with a 2-1 victory over the Angels with all of the runs scored in the 1st inning.Was it pretty? From an offensive point of view, it was not at all, but still they all count the same. I will definitely take every W they can get, however ugly they are.

To the takeaways:

Cole is back here and he’s still awesome

In his return from the COVID IL, and with what looked to be a strict pitch limit, Cole still dominated. He went for 5 2/3 innings pitched after exactly 90 pitches, allowing just one run – a homer to Justin Upton in the first – on just one walk and 2 hits. He had 9 K’s and stifled the Angels offense to a combined .135 xBA. As I said before, he was awesome.

He did struggle with his command in the first, throwing 21 pitches to get through the inning, but still managed to strikeout the side. He is nasty like that. The fastball was particularly nasty as well, showing a lot of movement that he used to freeze a couple of batters. Take a look at these beauties (shoutout to the Pitching Ninja of course):

Overall, he had a ridiculous 41 CSW% on the good old heater. And it’s not like the other pitches were bad. The slider, changeup, and curve had 32, 27, and 50 CSW% respectively – the curve on just 4 pitches. This was an ace-like start from Gerrit, and he would have probably thrown at least one more inning hadn’t he just returned from the COVID-IL.

We missed you Gerrit, but keep being awesome like this. Here are the highlights in video form:

The offense can’t deliver the killing blow

The offense was looking like it was about to be dominated by José Suárez again…and a Joey Gallo homer after a long Judge single was the only damage they could muster against the lefty for 4 innings. The homer was an absolute blast, so here is the very necessary video:

Luckily, the 5th brought better things against the lefty. Suárez immediately walked the top 3 batters in the Yankees lineup – DJ and Judge on 8 straight balls. Out came Maddon to take him out for funky righty Steve Cishek, and in the most early-2021-Yankees fashion, Stanton struck out and Luke Voit hit into a double play to end the threat without a run scored. That sound you hear is me becoming the Joker with all these double-plays.

Then, in the 8th, the Yankees yet again started the inning with walks to DJ and Judge. But the Yankees made an incredibly dumb decision to send both runners to steal with no outs. DJ, despite a good jump, was thrown out at third. Remember, the Yanks had Joey fricking Gallo in the batter’s box… they didn’t need the extra-base with Gallo there and had no reason to gift wrap them the first out of the inning in the bases with a below-average runner in DJ. I was capital M MAD with that one.

That sound you hear is me doing a Joker laugh again.

They – of course –managed to fail to score yet again. Luckily for them, they didn’t need anything more than that first-inning homer. Still, frustrating stuff from the offense.

Albert Abreu is entering the circle of trust (?)

It’s still not clear with the load the bullpen has been carrying as of late, this situation may just have been he’s one of the few available relievers. But still, Boone went to the mercurial righty with a one-run-lead in the 7th, and Albert proceeded to get a groundout, a flyout, and a K for a clean inning on just 10 pitches.

He kept it going in the 8th as well, getting the first two outs on an extra 5 pitches for a ground-out and a 3 pitch K on Stassi. He then got pulled for Joely Rodríguez and the lefty-on-lefty matchup against Ohtani.

On that super-small sample size, Abreu got a ridiculous 60 CSW%. Mainly because he got one whiff and three called strikes out of his 5 sliders.

He’s still figuring out what the best pitching strategy is for him. But he’s got some really nasty stuff, and there is certainly potential there for a really good reliever.

Lately, he’s shown the part of that potential. Here are his numbers for the last 7 games:

Leftovers

  • An amazing play on a rocket liner to CF by Jonathan Davis. He may not hit at all but the defense is great, check it out:
  • Check this awesome backwards walkout from Joely Rodríguez after getting Ohtani looking on a backdoor sinker:
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5 Comments

  1. DZB

    How wonderful would it be to win two today and basically be in a playoff position (yes, it will appear as a tie with Boston, but they will be ahead in the loss column – and of course, who knows what will happen with Oakland). That being said, a wildcard slot is a huge risk, so I hope they can make a move on the division when they meet the Rays, but the Rays just continue to win, so that feels less likely by the day.

  2. Wire Fan

    The double steal was far more irritating than the K and GIDP. One is just part of baseball, the other is just bad awareness by DJL or bad managing (if it was called from the bench).

    Good to get Cole back. Hopefully now just Monty away from getting Heaney out of the rotation after his next start.

    Would be great to see some sort of sustained offense to take the pressure off the pen (and maybe let the starters go longer). I just don’t know if that is ever going to happen this year.

  3. Shaun P.

    “Out came Scioscia?” I think that was Madden, unless I really missed something. Otherwise, a nice recap!

    • TCF16

      Unless something REALLY strange is going on it was Maddon not Madden!!

      • Shaun P.

        Indeed it was – one really must pay attention to autocorrect…

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