David Phelps struggled in a 10-2 loss against the Mariners on Monday. It was six runs on six hits in six innings. His previous success had Yankees’ fans dismissing the outing as an off day. But when he surrendered seven runs on 10 hits in 5.2 innings on Saturday, it created a big reason for concern. The Yankees eventually fell to the Royals 8-4.
The Saturday loss was marred with controversy. When a replay seemed to show the Yankees could overturn an unfavorable decision, manager Joe Girardi wanted to appeal. But the Yankees were denied because the umpire said the Royals batter had already entered the batter’s box before time was called. The good news on the day was Carlos Beltran‘s first hit since coming back from the DL.
On Tuesday, it was the bullpen that faltered. Hiroki Kuroda gave up one run in 6.2 innings. But Dellin Betances and Adam Warren both had difficulty with the A’s Stephen Vogt. Vogt doubled off of Betances in the eighth to tie it up, and then homered off of Warren in the 10th as Oakland won 5-2.
A day later, the Yanks and A’s headed into the seventh tied at four. Jacoby Ellsbury had hit a three-run homer in the third to put the Yanks on top. But recently- called up Jose Ramirez gave up a homer to the A’s Josh Donaldson as Oakland won again 7-4.
But sound the bugle, it was once again Tanaka to the rescue on Thursday. He allowed one run in six innings, as he ran his record to 9-1 and lowered his ERA to 2.02. Betances, Warren, and David Robertson followed with a scoreless inning each in the 2-1 victory.
It was Whitley who got the ball on Friday, still looking for his first win of the season despite keeping the Yankees in the game in all of his starts. Chase went seven innings allowing five hits, which left his ERA at 2.42. So it’s Tanaka and Whitley and hope for rain.
As the week ended, the Yankees had slipped to third place, a half game behind the Orioles and six back of the Blue Jays. But with Beltran back and Ellsbury swinging a hot bat, the offense is primed to take off soon. Ellsbury is hitting .389 in his last ten games.
How about that!