Yankees 3, Royals 0…
Luis Severino continued the recent albeit short trend of stellar pitching performances by Yankee starters. Masahiro Tanaka excluded, the rotation has pitched to win the last four games. Severino was tremendous, pitching eight innings. He was still clicking the radar gun at 99 mph in the 8th. By completing eight, Severino was able to pass the baton to Dellin Betances for the one inning save without relying on any of the tired arms in the pen.
Severino (3-2) was incredible in the scoreless outing with a season high 114 pitches. He allowed only one extra base hit (a double by Brandon Moss in the 5th inning) and did not allow any runners past second base. Sevy only allowed four hits and walked one while striking out seven. He lowered his season ERA to 3.11.
Jason Hammel kept the Yankees in check most of the night but the Pinstripers didn’t need much. Didi Gregorius hit a solo homer in the third inning to give the Yanks an early 1-0 lead.
|Credit: Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports|
In the 6th inning, the Yankees picked up another run through great-base running effort by Gary Sanchez. Sanchez singled to open the inning and then stole second. Thanks to a throwing error by Royals catcher Salvador Perez, Sanchez alertly raced on to third. Matt Holliday brought him home with a sac fly.
The Yankees picked up their final run when Gregorius led off the 7th inning with a double. A ground out by Chris Carter moved Gregorius to third, which brought Brett Gardner to the plate. With two strikes, Gardner was the beneficiary of a called ball on a pitch by Royals reliever Matt Strahm that seemingly landed well within the strike zone. It should have been the third strike for the second out of the inning but with the next pitch, Gardner singled to center to drive in the run.
Betances struck out the side in the 9th inning to earn his fourth save of the season, lowering his season ERA to 0.57.
The Yankees (27-17) moved 2 1/2 games up on the Baltimore Orioles. Baltimore lost 4-3 to the Minnesota Twins and their fine rookie pitcher Jose Berrios. The Boston Red Sox remained 3 1/2 games back with their 9-4 win over the Texas Rangers.
I want one of those guys…
Last night, Chris Sale of the Red Sox attempted to become the MLB pitcher in the Modern Era to record at least 10 strikeouts in nine straight games. He failed but he is still the fifth pitcher since 1900 to reach 100 strikeouts in his first 10 starts. It probably wasn’t one of his better games, but Sale still kept the game within reach for the Red Sox until their offense exploded for 7 runs in the 7th inning of their game against the Texas Rangers. Sale finished the night with 7 1/3 innings, 6 hits, 4 runs (3 earned), 1 walk and 6 strikeouts.
Credit: Christopher Evans
Sale has such a presence when he is on the mound. I can’t think of any potential trade targets that can match Sale as a frontline ace. I remain hopeful that GM Brian Cashman will surprise me, but I think most of us know who the available trade suspects are.
Gleyber Torres Watch (with a little Tyler Austin thrown in)…
It was another night at third base yesterday for Yankees top prospect Gleyber Torres as the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders defeated the Columbus Clippers, 5-0.
Watching the RailRiders this closely shows me one thing. Clint Frazier is on fire. He hit his eighth home run (and 28th RBI) in the first inning of the RailRiders’ game against the Columbus Clippers on Wednesday. He also had a two-run shot on Tuesday during Gleyber’s first game at the AAA Level. But enough about ridiculously hot outfielders and how the Yankees like to keep them down while parading the $153 Million Man in center field at Yankee Stadium on a nightly basis. Note: To Jacoby Ellsbury’s defense, he was injured during last night’s game against the Royals when he collided into the outfield wall after making a catch. He suffered a neck sprain and a concussion, and has been placed on the 7-Day DL. I wish him no ill will and hope that he returns to the health sooner than later. It does kind of make me wish that the padding on the outfield walls was a little more player-friendly. Rob Refsnyder has been recalled to the Bronx to replace Ellsbury. On performance alone, Frazier would have been the best option, but Refsnyder is already on the 40-Man Roster which was the difference-maker.
Credit: Andy Grosh/MiLB.com
Torres was a wee bit cooler than Frazier. With an ‘O-fer’ night (0-for-3), he wasn’t really doing much with the bat but he did walk twice, stole a base, and avoided striking out. All things considered, it was another game in the education and development of the Yankees premier prospect as he climbs the ladder for the eventual call to the Bronx.
I thought Mike Ford did a good job for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in the short time since his call-up. In nine games, he hit 4 homers and 10 RBI’s, batting .306/.432/.750. But he was returned to AA-Trenton yesterday when Ji-Man Choi was activated from the 7-Day DL for the RailRiders.
Credit: Cheryl Pursell
Maybe I should have re-named this section the Minor League Report.
As promised, here’s a little Tyler Austin…