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Breaking: Yankees acquire LHP James Paxton in exchange for LHP Justus Sheffield, RHP Erik Swanson, and OF Dom Thompson-Williams

The Yankees have made their first splash of the offseason by acquiring the Big Maple, James Paxton, from the Seattle Mariners. Fresh off his second-consecutive season at the top of the Mariner’s rotation, Paxton did not come cheap as the Yankees traded away their top prospect, Justus Sheffield, along with breakout prospects Erik Swanson and Dominic Thompson-Williams.

Stanton hits 300th career homer, Yanks lose after Betances meltdown

It’s fitting that Giancarlo Stanton hit his 300th career homer in a slugfest of a game. J.A. Happ got the start for the Yankees, struggling for the first time since donning the pinstripes on July 29th, lasting 4.1 innings and giving up five runs on 10 hits. The story of the night was the long ball and all game it seemed as though one team was going to rip out the other team’s heart with a late home run, which is exactly what happened in the top half of the ninth inning.

J.A. Happ began the game with an early blemish. With a 2-2 count to the leadoff hitter starting the game off, Jeimer Candelario, Happ threw a fastball right down the middle of the plate, and the third baseman took him deep to left to give the Tigers an early 1-0 lead. 

After a leadoff single by Brett Gardner in the third, Aaron Hicks hit a single to right fielder Nicholas Castellanos who threw a laser to Candelario at third to get Gardy who was trying to advance. That brought up Giancarlo Stanton, who knew immediately after hitting the 3-1 pitch that it would be the milestone that he has been chasing for almost two weeks; the homer, his 300th career long ball, giving the Yankees a 2-1 lead.

The Tigers responded in the fourth with a two-run home run of their own courtesy of Ronny Rodriguez, following a Niko Goodrum single. The Tiger offense followed up the home run with a single and a double to leave Happ in a second and third, one-out jam that the veteran southpaw worked his way out of to keep the damage at two.

The Bombers countered back in the bottom of the inning with a two-run blast of their own off the bat of Gleyber Torres, which also scored Luke Voit who led off the inning with a single, giving the Yankees a 4-3 lead.

The slugfest continued into the fifth inning, as Victor Martinez hit yet another two-run home run for the Tigers to once again take a one run lead, making the score 5-4 in favor of the Tigers. Happ then gave up two singles to Goodrum and Rodriguez to make it first and second with one out, and also end his night when Aaron Boone decided to go to Chad Green to get out of the jam, in which he did.

The Yankees tied the game in the bottom of the inning to ensure that Happ remains unbeaten in pinstripes, with a one-out, two-on infield single by Miguel Andujar, who’s hustle to first forced an errand throw, allowing Aaron Hicks to score after advancing to third.

Luke Voit gave the Yankees a lead as he brought yet another two-run homer to the game, hitting his bomb to straightaway center following a Giancarlo Stanton double; who looks much calmer at the plate following the completion of his chase for 300. Luke Voit continues to mash, leading Yankee fans to ask the question “why is this guy not our everyday first baseman for the near future?”

Zach Britton came in and pitched a clean eighth inning to continue his good recent play which he is hoping to make his expectation from now on. That left Dellin Betances to close it out in a role that he has struggled in when given the opportunity. He started off the inning with a strikeout of Mikie Mahtook. Then began the downfall… A walk of Castellanos led to a game tying two-run homerun (a common occurrence in this game) by Victor Martinez. Goodrum then hit a blast of his own to go back-to-back and give the Tigers an 8-7 lead. Betances would strike out the next two batters to escape the inning but not before the damage would be done. Gardy, Hicks, and Stanton went down 1-2-3 to finish it out and the Yankees received what feels like their most brutal loss of the year.

What’s Next?
The second game of the four-game set is tomorrow, as Sevy looks to build off of a good start against the Orioles as the Yankees take on Jordan Zimmermann. First pitch at 7:00.

Article by: Nick Simonelli

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