Back in the Bronx, the New York Yankees played host to the Washington Nationals in a two-game set. It appeared as though the boys in pinstripes were set up to sweep the Nats but were left with a splitting headache like Alex Ovechkin on a post-Stanley Cup bender.
The first game saw the return of Didi Gregorius’ power and the perfect pitching formula between CC Sabathia and the bullpen in the Yankees 3-0 victory.
BACK IN THE NEW YORK GROOVE
Gregorius rediscovered his power stroke at the Stadium. During the second, Gregorius launched a solo shot to right-center off a 1-1 curveball from Tanner Roark. An Austin Romine sac fly to left increased the New York lead to 2-0.
In the sixth, Gregorius connected on a full count, two-seam fastball from Roark, sending the ball into the second deck of right field for home run No. 13.
The Yankees certainly had their opportunities but ultimately fell to the Nationals 5-4.
Greg Bird doesn’t have to worry about his position or hearing footsteps from Triple-A but Brandon Drury is tearing it up as of late. During the second, Bird lifted the Yankees to a 2-1 lead, socking a home run to right off Erick Fedde. Bird added a double for good measure as well.
Sonny (road) Gray vs. Sonny (home) pinstripes. The home version struggled but battled through five frames. It looked like Gray was going to escape with a respectable outing until Juan Soto turned a 3-1 New York advantage into a 4-3 deficit, lifting an opposite field three-run homer to left, which carried out on a humid evening. Gray yielded seven hits and four runs on the night.
Gleyber Torres made some history in the fifth. On a 0-1 sinker from Fedde, Torres launched a bullet home run to left, squaring the contest at four. Torres’ 12th home run is a single-season franchise record from the nine-hole, passing Alfonso Soriano’s mark in 2001. The MLB record was set in 1996 by former Yankees shortstop Kevin Elster, who hit 21 that season from the nine spot with the Texas Rangers.
Facing Chasen Shreve in the seventh, Soto was back at it with the power ball. Soto crushed a 1-0 fastball to right-center, giving the Nationals a 5-4 lead. It was a big blip on a bullpen which has done yeoman’s work in recent vintage.
At 43-20, the Yankees get ready to host the Tampa Bay Rays for a four-game series at Yankee Stadium starting Thursday evening.
Pitching probables, Blake Snell vs. Domingo German, Nathan Eovaldi vs. Jonathan Loaisiga, TBD vs. Luis Severino, TBD vs. CC Sabathia.