Sunday, August 6, 2017
Jacoby Ellsbury broke the game open, but Aaron Judge put it away. Both of their offensive heroics on Sunday afternoon helped power the Yankees to an 8-1 rout over the Indians at Progressive Field, salvaging a split of the four-game set between postseason hopefuls.
In supporting a stellar start by Yankees righty Luis Severino, Ellsbury delivered a three-run triple off Carlos Carrasco in the sixth, beginning the process of turning a pitchers’ duel into a blowout. Ellsbury’s shot to the right-field wall highlighted a five-run outpouring in the frame off Carrasco, who had stymied New York for the first five frames.
“It’s nice winning these last two games,” Ellsbury said. “Any time you win going into an off-day, it’s a better atmosphere on the plane. Nice two wins for us. They’re a great team that we’re playing, so to take two from them after we lost the first two feels good.”
With the win, the Yankees remain three games behind the Red Sox, who also won Sunday, in the American League East. The AL Central-leading Indians have a 2 1/2-game lead on the Royals, who split a doubleheader with the Mariners on Sunday.
This was one of the best wins of the season, because not only did they get a great performance from Luis Severino but they, you know, SCORED SOME GODDAMN RUNS. This broke a streak of five straight games where the opposing starting pitcher went seven innings and gave up one run or less. That’s insane. But here’s the crazy thing - they easily could have seen that streak meet six games if Terry Francona hadn’t managed the game oddly in the sixth inning. The Yankees opened the inning with two hits, putting runners on second and third with no outs. Based on recent history, you would figure either two strikeouts or a strikeout and a popup and THEN a fly ball, thus avoiding any chance of a run. The first Yankee batter, sure enough, popped up. Then Aaron Judge came up, who has been a strikeout machine recently and had already struck out once in the game…and Francona had him intentionally walked! Chase Headley then hit a flyball that scored a run and then Todd Frazier walked and then Jacoby Ellsbury hit a three-run triple and Ronald Torreyes singled Ellsbury in. But here’s the thing - if Judge strikes out, then Headley’s fly ball is the third out and no runs would have been scored. So thanks to Terry Francona big time for this win. Oh, and former Yankee Abe Almonte helped by having a terrible read on Ellsbury’s hit and turned it into a triple.
There was a notable roster move after the game, as Jordan Montgomery was optioned to Triple A. This was almost certainly a case of keeping his innings down in the second half of the season (he will likely pitch less frequently in the minors) and not an actual statement about thinking that Jaime Garcia is better than Montgomery, but it is still a shame, as Jaime Garcia is, you know, not better than Jordan Montgomery.
Off day tomorrow and then we shall see if Aaron Hicks will be back on Tuesday to be the new everyday DH. It will also be nice to see if Gary Sanchez is out of the dog house. I really hate seeing Austin Romine play one game, seeing him play two was a special kind of suck.
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