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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.

Didi ties Jeter, but Gray struggles as Yankees drop series finale to Baltimore 6-4

The Yankees entered Sunday afternoon’s contest looking to complete a four-game sweep of the Baltimore Orioles as the offense looked to stay hot to wrap up the weekend. However, the Yankees spotted themselves an early 6-1 deficit and were unable to complete the comeback as they fell 6-4.
Photo Credit: Seth Wenig | AP

The Orioles struck first in the top of the second on a sharp RBI single up the middle by Austin Hays to score Chris Davis. Yankees starter Sonny Gray did a nice job of limiting the damage there, which in turn allowed Didi Gregorius to step up and tie the game with his third homer in three games in the bottom of the second. The blast was Gregorius’ 24th on the season, tying him with Derek Jeter for the single season record for homers in a season by a Yankee shortstop.
Photo Credit: Seth Wenig | AP
Gray gave the lead right back in the top of the third on a 3-2-2 RBI double down the left field line by Trey Mancini to score Manny Machado all the way from first base. It was one of the many tough breaks the Yankees faced on the afternoon.

The big blow came in the top of the fourth on a two-out three-run homer by Tim Beckham which opened up the lead to 5-1, Orioles. That inning would be Gray’s last, as this was one of his worst starts since joining the Yankees.

Bryan Mitchell entered the game in the fifth inning and quickly allowed the sixth Baltimore run on a groundout by Seth Smith. Mitchell settled down after the early trouble and only allowed that one run across three innings.

The Yankees would start their comeback in the bottom of the sixth on a two-out two-run double in the left-center field gap to score both Gary Sanchez and Starlin Castro making it a 6-3 game. With new life, Aaron Judge then led off the bottom of the eighth inning with a double to begin the Yankee threat. The Yankees were able to get runners on first and third bringing the tying run to the plate in Castro, but he only managed a SAC fly to bring the score to 6-4 O’s.

The Orioles brought in their closer Zach Britton for a four-out save and he got into a little bit of trouble in the ninth. After a one-out double by red-hot Jacoby Ellsbury, the O’s intentionally walked Aaron Judge with two-away, bringing the winning run to the plate in Sanchez. Unfortunately, Sanchez was set down on strikes in an anti-climactic finish.

Winning Pitcher: Ubaldo Jimenez (6-10, 6.57 ERA): 5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 10 K, 1 HR
Losing Pitcher: Sonny Gray (9-11, 3.38 ERA): 4.0 IP, 6 H, 5 R (5 ER), 2 BB, 4 K, 1 HR
Save: Zach Britton (15)

Didi Gregorius: 1-4 HR (24), RBI, R, K
Aaron Judge: 1-4, 2B, R, BB, K
Starlin Castro: 2-3, R, RBI, K
Matt Holliday: 1-3, 2B, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 2 K
Bryan Mitchell: 3.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 4 K

Article by: Chad Raines