The Yankees haven’t been able to get anything going this month, evidenced by their 9-13 record since building a season-high 12 game division lead.
Kenny Rogers has also struggled this month. He started tonight against the Angels and was hit hard as New York fell to California 12-3.
The first inning set the tone for the night, and it’s something that has plagued the Yankees over the last six games at Yankee Stadium. New York has been outscored 21-1 in first innings over that span.
The Angels put up a five spot in the opening frame, putting the Yankees in an early hole against starter Chuck Finley. For Rogers, it matched the worst start of his career. “I just stunk a little bit,” Rogers said. ”What can you do?” (Via NY Times)
The Yankees, who currently hold a five game lead over the Orioles, can’t afford to keep falling behind early in games. They’ve now lost four straight series. “It’s like trying to climb a mountain,” said manager Joe Torre.
Overall, Rogers allowed 10 runs on 9 hits while walking 4. He left the bases loaded for reliever Dave Pavlas, who promptly gave up a three-run double to Jim Edmonds to push the score to 10-2. The Angels put up 6 in the sixth to put the game out of reach.
The only Yankee offense came on two Tim Raines sacrifice flies and a Paul O’Neill solo home run. Finley held the Yankees down, tossing 7 innings and allowing 2 runs on 5 hits.
“I don’t care if it’s the first inning or the ninth inning when we get behind because a loss is a loss,” said O’Neill. “It’s going to change. When it does, we’ll have a lot more smiles around here.” (Via NY Times)