Game 78: A two-run win that should have been a blowout

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After six innings, this one was looking like a laugher. CC Sabathia pitched very well and the offense exploded for ten runs. Jonathan Holder had other plans, though. After his meltdown, the bullpen’s big arms had to bail him out as the Yankees held on for a 10-8 win. Let’s get to the takeaways:

After the first inning, Sabathia was fantastic. Toronto plated two runs right out of the gate, though only one probably should have scored. After committing one of baseball’s cardinal sins – a leadoff walk – Vladimir Guerrero Jr. drove in Eric Sogard with a double to right on a hit-and-run. Later, Rowdy Tellez doubled off of DJ LeMahieu’s glove. He probably should have caught it to keep the score 1-0:

Yeah, I’m sure DJ would say he should have had that. Instead, it was 2-zip before the Yankees came to bat.

Once the first was over, Sabathia got into a groove. And like we’ve grown so fond of in recent years, Sabathia induced a bunch of weak contact the rest of the way.

(Baseball Savant)

There is some light red shading there, but it’s not like those balls were scalded. Six of the nine batted balls had expected batting averages below .210. And, all that’s not to mention CC recorded a season-high nine strikeouts tonight. A job very well done.

With Aaron Hicks’s three-run tater in the fifth, the Yankees tied the record for most consecutive games in a row with at least one home run. The streak is now 27 straight games, even with the 2002 Texas Rangers. This was a pretty big dinger too; the Yankees hadn’t much of an answer for Toronto’s starter Aaron Sanchez up until that point.

Is it just me, or does it feel like Hicks swinging the bat a little better? Yesterday, he launched one just foul down the right field line against Justin Verlander. He also had one hit in each of the last two games against the Astros. I know this isn’t a big sample to work with, but hopefully Hicks’s bat is getting on track.

Insurance runs come in handy. For whatever reason, Jays’ manager Charlie Montoyo left his starter in for 104 pitches. Sanchez has had a rough year (5.49 ERA entering tonight), so taking Five innings and three runs isn’t a great line, but it really all came down to one swing, Hicks’s homer. Instead, it wound up being seven runs allowed in five and a third.

Anyway, I’m not complaining. The Yankees strung together a bunch of hits against Sanchez and Derek Law, who came in relief. By the time the inning was over, the Jays had to go to another reliever to stop the bleeding at 10-2. Sean Reid-Foley came in after…

…Giancarlo Stanton delivered the cherry on top. He hit a mammoth three-run shot just left of center against Law, onto the terrace between the bleachers and restaurant. It was his first home run of the season.

It’s so nice to have Stanton back in the lineup, everyone.

The Statcast details, for those so inclined:

(Baseball Savant)

I feel sorry for the baseballs.

No lead is safe with Jonathan Holder. A 10-2 lead is the perfect time to use a struggling reliever, right? Wrong in Holder’s case, I guess. Instead of mopping things up, Holder didn’t record an out and gave up five runs. He gave up two obligatory dingers: a solo shot to Gurriel and a grand slam to Freddy Galvis.

Holder’s last six appearances, including tonight: 13 hits and 13 runs in 5.1 innings. Is that bad?

There’s no beating around the bush here: Holder needs to go to Triple-A and get the Chad Green treatment. At this point, he can’t be trusted in blowouts Hopefully, some time down in the minors can get him back on track.


  • Ho hum, DJ LeMahieu reached base all five times tonight, recording four hits and a walk. He now has a 10 game hit streak.
  • Everyone in the lineup except Gary Sánchez had a knock. Because of course.
  • However, the Kraken contributed defensively instead. He unleashed his cannon to throw out Lourdes Gurriel Jr. trying to steal second.
  • Aroldis Chapman gave up a run and needed 25 pitches to record his 22nd save of the season. Chances are that he won’t be available to close tomorrow if needed.

These two sides are at it again tomorrow – same time, same place. Because Green pitched tonight, the Yankees do not have a starter for tomorrow (yet), though Nestor Cortes seems to make sense. The Blue Jays will counter with Clayton Richard.


DoTF: Deivi Garcia, two relievers combine for Trenton no-hitter


The Yankees Have Optioned Jonathan Holder to AAA


  1. Huckleberry

    Oy, Holder is making Cessa look good. Wonder who they will call up from Scranton when they send him down? Chance Adams started for Scranton yesterday so he won’t be available to pitch for a while. Feyereisen has been pitching well but he’s not on the 40-man roster. Tarpley maybe?

  2. RetroRob

    It wouldn’t be surprising if we hear tomorrow that Holder was sent down and another reliever recalled. Perhaps Tarpley. They need another arm out there to trust, and right now Holder is an issue. Yes, the Green treatment is in order.

    • overseasyankeefan

      It makes total sense to send down Holder at the moment, a la Chad Green earlier this season. He definitely needs to fix whatever is going wrong with him before being called up again. Tarpley or Joe Harvey looks like a most likely candidate here.

      • RetroRob

        If they do it (and Boone’s evasive answer after the game indicates they might), I’d bet on Tarpley since Harvey pitched tonight.

        • overseasyankeefan

          Oh I see. Didn’t check who pitched in Scranton tonight before the previous answer ^^!. Just knew Chance Adams pitched the day before. Then Tarpley looks like the most sensible candidate to be in Bronx tomorrow.

          • RetroRob

            Well, they just announced Holder was being optioned to AAA, but no corresponding call up was announced yet.

  3. overseasyankeefan

    An add-on to the Kraken’s defense tonight: blocked balls in the 6th helped CC to finish the inning :-). As for the bullpen tomorrow, it looks like there is still a chance that Chad Green could be used tomorrow. His pitch count was 15 (or 16) tonight. Kahnle will definitely be good to go (fewer than 10 pitches tonight) and Ottavino as well (3 pitches tonight though his total pitches in the previous days were kind of high). Hopefully the bulk guy Cortes (and Hale if needed) will get the job done!

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