It didn’t take long for this one to feel over. DJ Stewart hit a two-run homer in the first inning against Masahiro Tanaka and the Orioles never looked back. Baltimore topped the Yankees 5-1. The O’s took three of four from the Bombers this weekend. Not good. Anyway, since it’s a holiday weekend and a beautiful Sunday afternoon in the New York area, we’re going to keep these takeaways short and sweet. On we go:
- One bad pitch is enough to do this team in. That’s the kind of state this offense is in, folks. Tanaka pitched really well today, but left in line for the loss because the bats were lifeless yet again. It would have been nice to see Tanaka give a little more length (he left after 5 1/3 innings), but it was a solid outing nonetheless. His one mistake? The aforementioned Stewart’s 2-run homer in the first inning. Tanaka left a splitter up and Stewart made him pay.
- This lineup has no punch. The Yankees were actually lucky to score a run in this one. The offense scored on Erik Kratz’s RBI fielders choice in the second inning. It probably should have been an inning-ending double play given Kratz’s speed, but third baseman Rio Ruiz’s hesitation gave Kratz just enough time to beat the throw. This came after Mike Ford and Mike Tauchman missed hittable pitches earlier in the frame (as they so often do). This lineup has nowhere to turn until the big bats get healthy. The depth just isn’t any good at the moment.
- Second guessing Aaron Boone’s seventh inning. After back-to-back one out singles, Aaron Boone let Erik Kratz bat while down 4-1. That’s just inexcusable. He’d already used Aaron Hicks as a pinch hitter in the previous at bat, but he still had Gleyber Torres and Gary Sánchez at his disposal. Don’t want to use Gary? Fine, I get it. He’s been awful. But pinch hit Gleyber then. Don’t wait until the next batter to do it! Kratz wound up flying out, but what if he grounded into a double play? Torres would have never had a chance to hit with runners aboard. Just bad managing. Who’d have thought that the day the Yankees bench Gary, Kratz would have two of the biggest plate appearances of the game? Sigh. By the way, since Torres did wind up pinch hitting, why couldn’t he play at all? I get that he was replaced defensively by Thairo Estrada, but man that’s frustrating too.
The Yankees are now 21-19. Toronto is currently up by four against Boston, so it looks like the Yankees will fall into third place and the American League’s eighth seed by the end of the day. This comes as the Yankees begin a three game set against the Blue Jays tomorrow. A pretty big series upcoming, indeed.