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Series Recap: Yankees pocket pair from Royals

The New York Yankees nearly pulled off the perfect road trip but you can’t win them all I suppose. Impressively, New York was able to sweep a doubleheader from the Kansas City Royals and nearly pulled out a comeback for a potential sweep in the finale. In the big picture, the Yankees seventh consecutive series victory and moved to 11-1 in their past dozen series’. New York closes out its road trip at 6-1.


The old J.A. Happ returned, mostly. New York received timely hits from Clint Frazier and Thairo Estrada and a big bomb from Luke Voit. It all added up to a 7-3 victory.


The Yankees struck first in the first as Frazier lined a two-run double to right of Jakob Junis.


After Brett Gardner drilled a one-out triple to right, Gio Urshela does what he does with RISP by lifting a sacrifice fly to right, increasing the lead to 3-0. Oh, and did you see him make this throw from third from the seat of his pants?!

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Happy was probably happy to not be facing the Baltimore Orioles, as odd as that sounds. The four-seam fastball was moving and dotting up in the zone. Through the first five frames, Happ yielded one hit. On the afternoon he recorded 10 K’s, nine of which were swings and misses. The only blemish was a three-run homer to left by Whit Merrifield in the sixth to tie the game but Happ would fan the next two batters to retired the side.

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Voit, the Missouri native responded in kind during the seventh inning. Facing Scott Barlow, Voit smacked an 0-1 slider 470 feet to left for a tw0-run tater as the Bronx Bombers regained the lead at 5-3.

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Capping off the scoring in the eighth was a two-run rope double to left by Estrada, increasing the advantage to 7-3.


It almost felt like both teams begrudgingly made it through this game. Neither starter or opener if you will, made it beyond the first inning. The offense hacked away, the defense was shoddy and Chance Adams may have earned himself a slot in the rotation. The end result was a 6-5 victory and a doubleheader sweep.


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Trailing 1-0 in the second stanza, New York sliced up Jorge Lopez like a scene out of a “Kill Bill” movie. Austin Romine, whose brilliant barehand block of home plate in the first prevented KC from scoring more, lined a two-run single to center. Romine’s hit gave the Yankees a 2-1 advantage and was the first of a three-hit evening.

A two-run double to center by Cameron Maybin made it 4-1 and DJ LeMahieu’s RBI-single to left sent Lopez to the showers and upped the lead to 5-1.

Maybin would cash in again with an RBI-single to left in the third off Glenn Sparkman, making it 6-1 Yankees.


Chance “Pugsley” Adams followed up his superb relief outing against Tampa with a solid evening in Kansas City. Adams kept the Yankees in front with four frames of work. Given the shoddy defense behind him, his ledger was better than indicated.

The Royals chipped back with a home cooking scored double off the heel of Gardner’s glove by Adalberto Mondesi, which plated a run in the third.

Outfield misadventures continued into the fourth as a flyball from Hunter Dozier fell between Gardner and Frazier for a one-out double. Jorge Soler traded places with Dozier on a ball Frazier couldn’t reach in right.

A Cam Gallagher single to right would cut the New York advantage to 6-4.


After mostly smooth sailing from Jonathan Holder, Tommy Kahnle and Zack Britton, Aroldis Chapman made things interesting in the ninth. With one out, Chapman walked Billy Hamilton and enabled him to advance to third on an errant pickoff attempt. A sacrifice fly to left by Gallagher cut the lead to 6-5. Yet, Chapman would rebound by fanning Terrance Gore to end the contest. In a round number alert, the save marked career No. 250 for Chapman.

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Well, you can’t win them all I suppose. New York fell behind 7-1 early, rallied back to knot it at seven in the ninth but ultimately fell 8-7 in 10 innings.


As he did the afternoon before, Frazier staked the Yankees to an early advantage with an RBI-single to left off Danny Duffy in the second stanza.


Domingo German is usually locked in on Domingo but he was SaBADo. German yielded seven runs, surrendering four home runs. The big blows came from a three-run bomb to left-center by Martin Maldonado in the second, a solo homer to Ryan O’Hearn to left in the third, a two-run tater to Dozier in the fifth and a solo rocket to Soler to follow in the fifth. German struck out six but most of that came through the first turn around the order. In two starts against the Royals, German sports an 8.18 ERA this season.

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Much like Adams, Nestor Cortes Jr. performed yeoman’s work out of the pen and kept the Yankees within striking distance. Cortes tossed four scoreless frames scattering four this, walking two and fanning four. Aside from a somewhat shaky ninth, Cortes was up to the task.


A tiring Duffy thought he was in the clear in the sixth. Yet, a two-out throwing error by Mondesi at shortstop enabled Hicks to reach. After a Sanchez single, Torres launched a three-run blast to center.


Facing old friend Ian Kennedy, the Yankees fought back in the ninth. A pair of one-out singles by Frazier and Urshela put New York in good shape. A two-out RBI-single to right by LeMahieu cut the deficit to 7-5. Following a walk to Voit, Hicks came through, turning a game-tying, two-run single to right.


Unfortunately, it was all for naught in the tenth. Holder inexplicably issued a one-out walk and stolen base to Hamilton. After a brilliant play by Urshela retired Nicky Lopez, a hot smash and bad hop past third by Merrifield sealed the win for the Royals.

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At 34-18, the Yankees return home to Yankee Stadium to host the San Diego Padres for a three-game series starting Monday.

Pitching probables, Matt Strahm vs. Eric Lauer vs. Masahiro Tanaka, Chris Paddack vs. TBD.