Today in Southside Chicago the New York Yankees took on the Chicago White Sox in a series finale. It was a rubber match between Ivan Nova (3-3, 3.38 ERA) and the “Shark” Jeff Samardzija (8-5, 3.98 ERA). Prior to the game, the Yankees announced that reliever Diego Moreno was placed on the 15-day DL with elbow inflammation in his pitching arm. Branden Pinder was recalled from AAA to take his place.
One piece of interesting news was that veteran pitcher CC Sabathia started the game in the Yankees bullpen. I wonder if he was in there to get some work, or if the Yankees are officially moving him into the long reliever roll.
Anyway, the Yankees continued their trend of scoring early, as Jacoby Ellsbury launched a leadoff home run to start the ballgame. It was Ellsbury’s fourth long ball of the season, and it was the 91st first inning run that the Yankees have scored so far this season. They led 1-0 after one inning of play.
In the bottom half of the first, White Sox slugger Jose Abreau smoked a foul ball off his shin, but stayed in the ballgame and smacked the next pitch off Ivan Nova over Ellsbury’s head and off the centerfield wall. He was limited to a single because of his leg, but Abreau extended his hitting-streak to 13 straight games.
Samardzija regrouped well and held the Yankees hitters in check up until the 4th inning when their offense exploded and added five more runs. Thanks to RBI’s from Didi Gregorius, Jacoby Ellsbury and Brett Gardner, the Yankees improved their lead t0 6-0.
Stephen Drew tripled in Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius in the top of the seventh and Jacoby Ellsbury knocked in a run on a ground ball RBI, extending the Yankees lead to 12-1.
Chasen Shreve took over for Ivan Nova in the seventh inning after Nova pitched a very strong six innings, with a fastball touching 95 mph, which is a positive sign considering he was dealing with arm fatigue earlier in the week. The final line on the day for Ivan Nova was 6.0 innings pitched, 5 hits against, 1 run, 1 earned run, 2 BBs and 7 strikeouts.
While Shreve has been dominant as of late, he did not pitch well today, allowing solo homers to Alexei Ramirez and Geovany Soto before being replaced by Branden Pinder after just 0.2 innings. Fortunately Pinder was able to end the inning and keep the Yankees lead at 12-3.
Andrew Miller came on in relief for the Yankees and pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning, as the Yankees went on to win the series after taking two-of-three from the Chicago White Sox.
Stephen Drew finished the ball game with a single, a double and a triple, just a home run shy of completing the cycle. Interestingly enough, the last Yankees cycle was completed by Melky Cabrera in 2009 against the White Sox, the same team he now plays for.
The story of the day was Ivan Nova’s brilliant performance.
It was the Yankees final game of this road trip and their final game of the regular season outside of the Eastern Standard time zone.
The Yankees finished the road trip at 6-4, and are back in action on Tuesday night in the Bronx for a big three-game series against the Boston Red Sox.
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