To say Vernon Wells has been scuffling of late is a bit of an understatement. When you are 9 for your last 90, it doesn’t even qualify as a prolonged slump anymore. It’s putrid. Could today be the day Wells turns it around? His pinch hit double in the Yankees four run seventh inning, helped them prevail 7-5 over the Tampa Bay Rays.
The Rays took the lead in the second on Evan Longoria’s 17th homer of the year. The Yankees took the lead in the third, when Zoilo Almonte brought home two with a single. They extended the lead in the fifth. With one out, Robinson Cano walked. Travis Hafner reached on James Loney’s throwing error, and Lyle Overbay walked. Almonte walked the bases loaded to make it 3-1.
The Rays struck back in the sixth. Sam Fuld led off with a walk. Desmond Jennings followed with a double. After two outs, CC Sabathia had to decide to pitch to Longoria or rookie Wil Myers. Longoria was intentionally walked, and Myers followed with a grand slam for his first major league homer.
The Yankees took the lead for good in the seventh. Cano walked, Overbay doubled and Almonte walked to load the bases. After a strikeout, David Adams walked to bring home a run. Wells pinch-hit for Chris Stewart and delivered a three-run ground-rule double off Jake McGee to give the Yankees the lead for good.
YGY Player Of The Game: Wells
The series concludes with Old-Timers Day. The ceremonies kick off at 11:15 with the game starting at 2:05. Ivan Nova will be recalled from the minors to take on Chris Archer.
Notes: Chris Bootcheck was re-signed to a minor league deal with an opt-out for August 15th if he isn’t in the majors. Alex Rodriguez got five simulated at-bats in Florida. Derek Jeter took grounders and batting practice at Yankee Stadium.