In a game the Yankees desperately needed, they certainly didn’t play like it. Too bad the game wasn’t only five innings; after that the Yankees looked flat out terrible.
Vidal Nuno looked sharp early on striking out three through two innings. That was about the extent of his highlight reel for the night.
The Yankee offense got it going in the third inning as they broke open the game with four runs. Ichiro Suzuki got them started with a walk to start off the inning. Following a strike out by John Ryan Murphy, Brett Gardner singled into center moving Ichiro to third. With runners on the corners and one out, Gardner stole second, which can be looked at as a turning point in the inning. If Gardner doesn’t steal there, the short stop will be in double play position and ultimately turn Derek Jeter’s infield single into an inning ending double play. Instead, with runners on second and third, Jeter knocks in Ichiro on his infield single still with one out. Jacoby Ellsbury then took Chavez deep to center for a three run home run.
Nuno gave back a run in the top half of the fourth when Yoenis Cespedes demolished one to center. It was his 11th of the season, but that was the only damage that inning.
It only took one more inning before Nuno’s night was done. The lefty found himself in trouble after he walked the leadoff batter and gave up a single to Nick Punto to give the A’s first and second with no one out. Following a groundout to advance the runners to second and third, Jed Lowrie hit a sacrifice fly to right scoring the A’s second run of the night. Girardi made the move to bring in Matt Daley and end Nuno’s night with a final line of 4.2 innings, six hits, and two earned runs. Daley managed to get a fly out to right to end the threat.
Again the Yankees found themselves in trouble again the following inning when Cespedes led off the inning with his second home run of the night to make it a 4-3 game. Following a Jeter throwing error, Matt Thornton was called on to pitch to Brandon Moss, who killed the Yankees the previous night. Moss singled, Kyle Blanks walked, and then Alberto Callaspo tied the game with a sac fly to the wall in left for the first out of the inning. Thornton settled in and retired the next two batters to end the inning.
Jose Ramirez made his big league debut tonight after being called up earlier today. He got a warm welcome from Josh Donaldson as he hit a Ramirez pitch out of the park faster than any ball we’ve ever seen. That home run gave the A’s a 5-4 lead, creating an insurmountable deficit for the Yankees to come back from.
The bullpen proceeded to give up another two runs the next two innings and the Yankee bats looked disinterested at the plate. Another disappointing night for the Yankees after such a promising start.
The Yankees look to avoid the sweep tomorrow afternoon with ace Masahiro Tanaka on the mound.
Tags: New York Yankees