Thursday, April 20, 2017
The Yankees combined tape-measure thunder with a Masahiro Tanaka gem to put the finishing touches on an impressive first homestand, breezing to a 9-1 victory over the White Sox on Wednesday night at Yankee Stadium.
Starlin Castro and Aaron Judge whipped their teammates into a frenzy with back-to-back homers in the fifth inning off rookie Dylan Covey. Chase Headley and Aaron Hicks also went deep for the surging Yanks, who won eight of nine games in their best home showing since July 2009.
“We came here and played in front of our fans,” said Judge, whose 448-foot blast was the third-longest at Yankee Stadium in the Statcast™ era. “There was a lot of energy in this stadium the whole homestand. I think we just kind of fed off that, and our pitching staff came out and did what they did. I think collectively as a team, we just did our job.”
The healthy run support helped Tanaka pick up his second victory of the year on a night when his best stuff seemed to be absent. The first four innings were a grind for the right-hander, who settled in to hold the White Sox to Jose Abreu’s RBI double over seven innings while striking out six.
“He cleaned up his pitches,” catcher Austin Romine said. “His slider was a little tighter, his split was real good. That was the best I’ve seen his split this year. The fastball command was there, other than a couple of pitches. Overall I thought he did pretty well.”
Man, this team is really starting to get disturbing in how well that they are playing. They are just hitting the hell out of the ball and that’s all without perhaps their best hitter on the team! And with their backup shortstop instead of their pretty good hitting shortstop. That’s what is so remarkable about all of this, is that they’re doing it without Sanchez or Gregorius.
The Yankees finished out one hell of a homestand with a whole lot of offense and some battling from Tanaka, who did not look good at all all night, but he hung in there and gutted out a one-run outing. Good for him. They obviously will need him if they are going to make any noise this season.
Hopefully CC can keep the good times going against Pittsburgh on Friday!
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