BRONX, N.Y. — Home cooking was all the New York Yankees needed against the Atlanta Braves at Yankee Stadium. The Bronx Bombers certainly found their comfort zone, extending their consecutive undefeated series streak in the Bronx to 26 straight. New York took the two-game sweep and partied like it was 1999 when they also swept the Braves in the World Series.
It wasn’t a game one would place in the time capsule per se but an early Yankee lead had the Braves playing catch up all night. New York was ultimately able to power its way to a 9-6.
LUKIE ROCKS TOUKI
After DJ LeMahieu singled and Aaron Hicks reached on an errant throw by Touik Toussaint, Luke Voit took advantage of another Toussaint mistake. Voit launched a three-run bomb to left, staking the Bronx Bombers to a 3-0, first-inning lead.
The Yankees capitalized on another Braves error with Voit at the dish and the bases packed in the third inning. Voit lined a laser at third baseman Austin Riley, who caught the ball but threw wide of first base in an attempt to double up Hicks. Heads up base running enabled LeMahieu to dart home from third.
Later in the frame, a two-out, two-run double to right by designated hitter Mike Ford, made it 6-0 pinstripes.
Pulling an audible, Aaron Judge decided to go oppo taco in the fifth frame against Bryse Wilson. All Judge had to do was throw the barrel out and drive the ball, denting the Toyota sign above the bullpen in right for a solo smash.
New York would tack on another run later in the frame on a double-play ground out by Ford.
Jordan Montgomery provided the pinstripes with a representative outing. The first five frames were flawless from Gumby. With one out in the sixth, Montgomery had retired 10 consecutive batters. Yet, in the sixth, consecutive one-out singles by Travis d’Arnaud and Freddie Freeman brought Marcel Ozuna to the dish. Ozuna proceeded to swat a three-run bomb to left to cut the New York lead in half.
CONFUSION SETS IN
During the home half of the sixth, manager Aaron Boone pulled Judge for Mike Tauchman. Nothing was wrong with Judge. Maybe Boone got concerned that Judge went oppo taco on his home run? Yeah, that’s it, that’s the ticket! After everything was “fine” during the postgame, Boone changed his tune Wednesday afternoon, saying Judge exhibited some lower body tightness.
Moving to the seventh inning, despite having Monday off, Boone decided to play, “let’s steal an out!” with the underbelly of the bullpen, once again. David Hale replaced Montgomery and yielded consecutive singles to Riley and Tyler Flowers before fanning Ender Inciarte and exiting for Adam Ottavino. Dansby Swanson reached on a fielder’s choice and error by LeMahieu after a miscommunication between him and Gleyber Torres resulted in no one covering second base. This followed a third-inning play when Gio Urshela fielded a ball hit by Inciarte and no one covered the bag at second. A little chatter, fellas!
New York would get that run back on an RBI-double to right by Ford off Luke Jackson in the bottom of the seventh.
Yet, things got sloppy once again in the eighth inning. With Luis Cessa on, Torres booted a ball hit by Adam Duvall. A Johan Camargo double plated Duvall. After Riley flew out to right, Flowers switched places with Camargo, doubling to left to end Cessa’s evening. Chad Green came on to put out the fire with a strikeout and a nice stretch by Voit on a throw from Torres to retire the side.
Zack Britton sealed the deal with a no-frills ninth inning.
The second game was all about the triumphant return of Clint Frazier. Frazier finished a triple shy of the cycle and displayed his bat speed all evening. That and some great base running and timely hitting added up to a 12-6 victory.
I can’t even say he pitches up to or down to the competition, so, maybe more so to the moment, if that makes sense. It wasn’t postseason Masahiro Tanaka on the bump. Not awful but not the sharpest outing. Tanaka lasted four frames, yielded a two-run homer to left by Camargo in the second stanza. The veteran righty scattered five hits, walked two and fanned three as well.
77 SUNSET STRIP
Yet, it didn’t take long for the Bronx Bombers to respond with a bang against Huascar Ynoa in the home half. Gary Sanchez got the ball rolling with a soaring solo smash to left.
The ensuing batter Frazier followed suit with a blast to left, doubling the Yankee advantage to 2-0.
El Rojo was en Fuego.
OFFENSE KEEPS IT ROLLING
The lineup kept it up against the Braves bullpen in the fourth frame. LeMahieu continued to do what he does, leading off with a single to right against Tyler Matzek. With one down, Aaron Hicks, who made a sweet grab against the wall in the first inning, doubled home LeMahieu, who got a terrific read on the ball. Then with two down, Gleyber Torres plated Hicks with a single to right off Josh Tomlin.
The pinstripes piled on some more in the fifth frame. With one out, Frazier scalded a double to left for his third hit of the evening. LeMahieu, who had a four-hit night, plated Frazier with a two-out knock to right. After LeMahieu stole second base, Voit singled to center, plating LeMahieu and moving up to second on the Inciarte error in center, great heads up base running by both on the play to cap off the scoring.
BULLPEN WRAPS IT UP
Once again Boone employed the art of stealing outs, alternating between the top flight and underbelly of the bullpen. On this night it all worked out with the Braves only adding one more run in the ninth, before Britton was summoned to record the final two outs.
At 12-6, the Yankees host the Boston Red Sox at Yankee Stadium for a four-game series starting Friday evening.