Behind 7 strong from Tanaka, HR from Torres, Yankees defeat Detroit 2-1

Behind seven strong innings from Masahiro Tanaka and a fifth inning blast from Gleyber Torres, the Yankees took the third game in their four-game set with the Tigers yesterday by the count of 2-1.  This game featured the Yankees debut of Andrew McCutchen (0-3, 2K, HBP) and the return of Gary Sanchez. 

Photo Credit: Bill Kostroun/AP Photo

The Tigers scored their lone run in this ballgame in the first inning, loading the bases off Tanaka before even a single out was recorded before Victor Martinez was able to plate Mikie Mahtook via a sac fly to left field.  The three Tigers hits off of Tanaka in the first were three of the softest hits you’ll ever see, so it wasn’t like the righty was getting lit up early.  He rebounded nicely, however, getting Martinez on the sac fly before striking out Niko Goodrum and then retiring Ronny Rodriguez to end the threat. 

The Yankees wouldn’t put a man on base until the bottom of the fifth when Miguel Andujar led off the frame with a walk.  Tigers’ left-hander Daniel Norris was in total control up until this point and his lone mistake – a hanging slider to Torres that didn’t quite get down enough – ended up costing him. He would leave the following inning with an injury, but New York would fail to scratch across another run the remainder of the afternoon. 

Tanaka ran into trouble again in the top of the seventh but was again masterful in escaping the jam to preserve the lead.  After a leadoff double by Grayson Greiner and a single from JaCoby Jones put runners on second and third with nobody out, Tanaka buckled down by forcing Dawel Lugo to ground out softly to first base and then striking out both Mahtook and Adduci.   

With both Zach Britton and David Robertson unavailable in this game, New York got clean innings from Jonathan Holder in the eighth and Dellin Betances in the ninth to lock down their 86th win of the season. 

With the win, Tanaka became just the second Yankees starter ever to record double-digit wins in each of his first five major league seasons, joining Andy Pettitte. 

With his strikeout of Jeimer Candelario to start the ninth inning, Dellin Betances became the first relief pitcher ever to record 100 or more strikeouts in five consecutive seasons out of the bullpen. 

Winning Pitcher: Masahiro Tanaka (10-5, 3.83) 
Losing Pitcher: Daniel Norris (0-3, 5.49) 
Save: Dellin Betances (2) 

What’s next? 
The Yankees will look to take the series this afternoon (1:05pm, YES Network) when they send Lance Lynn (8-9, 4.84) to the mound against Detroit left-hander Matthew Boyd (8-12, 4.22).  Following the game, the Yankees will head West for their most important road trip of the season, with games against Oakland, Seattle and Minnesota on tap. 

Recap by: Andrew Natalizio


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