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Pinstriped glory, the greatest moments in Yankee history part four: The ’98 Yankees’ magnificent season

There are a few things about the Yankees that I’m very stubborn about, things that no matter how hard you debate with me I’ll just never change my mind on. For instance, Joe DiMaggio is the greatest baseball player the world has ever seen, if I ever have a son, I want him to grow up to be the man Lou Gehrig was, and the 1927 team is the greatest that baseball will ever see. However, while I am of the mindset the ’27 team is the greatest, there will never be a season more impressive than 1998. The team won 114 games in the regular season while losing only 48. They won the AL East by a mind boggling 22 games and went 11-2 in the playoffs sweeping the San Diego Padres in the World Series for the club’s 24th overall championship. Their win total regular season and postseason combined was 125 which is still a major league record to this day.

Beltran's blast propels Yankees to victory

After Sunday's abysmal hitting which led to a miserable loss against the Orioles, the Yankees desperately needed to get back into the win column — and did. After six innings of impressive pitching by Yankees starter Masahiro Tanaka and Angels starter Matt Shoemaker, the Yankees erased a two run deficit in the seventh thanks to back-to-back jacks by Brian McCann and Starlin Castro. Carlos Beltran followed suit and belted a game winning home run to right, propelling the Yankees two a 5-2 victory.
Picture Credit: Kathy Willens | AP
The Yankees started the ballgame off on the wrong foot, as after Tanaka allowed a leadoff single to Yunel Escobar, he moved into scoring position on a lackadaisical play by right fielder Carlos Beltran. After catching a routine fly ball off the bat of Kole Kalhoun, Beltran lobbed it in to the infield, allowing a heads-up Escobar to tag-up and move to second. If Beltran came up firing, Escobar would have been dead in his tracks. Two batters later, Albert Pujols drove Escobar in on a single up the middle, which gave the Angels an early 1-0 lead. The Yankees bad luck continued in the bottom of the frame, as after Jacoby Ellsbury hit a leadoff single, he was thrown out at second. The replay clearly showed that he was safe, but the call stood upon review.

Tanaka settled in after this first inning mishap, allowing just a sole run the rest of his outing. In the third inning, Kalhoun drove in the Angels second run of the game on a sacrifice fly. Both pitchers cruised through the next three innings, and just as many fans began to accept that the Yankees offense was about to waste another impressive start, the Bronx Bomber's bats caught fire with two outs in the bottom of the 7th. Brian McCann and Starlin Castro hit back-to-back absolute moonshots to knot it up at two.

These home runs pulled Tanaka off the hook of another undeserved loss, and Andrew Miller took over on the bump. Miller looked electric per usual, setting sluggers Kalhoun, Mike Trout, and Pujols down on strikes.

After singles by Ellsbury and Brett Gardner put runners on the corners in the bottom of the eight, Carlos Beltran put the nail in the coffin with a three-run blast to right field, which put the Yankees ahead 5-2. Aroldis Chapman secure the lead in the ninth, and the YANKEES WIN!

Article by: Sammy Criscitello
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