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Bullpen Day Thrives, Yanks top Rays 4-1

Entering the last week of the regular season the Yankees opened a four-game set Monday night in the always dreaded trip to face the Tampa Bay Rays. The Yankees came into tonight sitting one and a half games (two in the loss column) above the Oakland A’s for home field advantage in the AL Wild Card game. Aaron Boone decided to go with a “bullpen day” tonight instead of giving the ball to a typical starter.

Severino has shortest start of year, Yankees blown out by A’s 8-

The night after J.A. Happ made a great case to be the Wild Card Game starter against presumably the Oakland A’s, Luis Severino did himself the exact opposite. Sevy continued his inconsistent play, lasting just 2.2 innings and giving up 6 runs (5 earned) on 6 hits with 1 walk and 3 strikeouts.
Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images



The game started as poorly as it and as much of a letdown as it possibly could. In the top half of the first inning, the Yankees loaded the bases as a result of a double by Giancarlo Stanton, and two walks by Aaron Hicks and Gary Sanchez. Two fly outs by Brett Gardner in the leadoff role and the newbie Andrew McCutchen in the three spot made it so Luke Voit stepped up to the plate with the bases loaded and two outs and, in a surprising turn of events, he actually did not come through this time, grounding out to end the inning.

In the bottom half of the inning, everything that could have gone wrong, did go wrong. There were passed balls by Sanchez, wild pitches by Severino (which could have also been considered passed balls but let’s not just forgive Severino for his role in this whole mess of an inning), phantom check swing calls (Jed Lowrie swung through the ball, got the check swing call, and then proceeded to knock in the A’s first run), and a ton of doubles. When all was said and done, four runs had crossed the plate and the Yankees were in a four-run hole after having the bases loaded in the bottom of the first. 

The A’s added to their lead in the bottom of the third inning, starting with a walk of Matt Chapman. Jed Lowrie then singled to make it second and third with no outs. Khris Davis then hit a hard ground ball to third that hit Neil Walker in the chest, forcing him to make only the one out at first. After a big strikeout of Matt Olsen, Boone decided to leave Sevy in with Jonathan Holder ready in the bullpen. Stephen Piscotty then singled on the second pitch to score both Chapman and Lowrie from third and second base respectively; making the score 6-0 and ending Severino’s night in just 2.2 innings.

In the following inning, the A’s continued to add to the lead, starting with a Chad Pinder single and a four pitch walk to Josh Phegly. Ramon Laureano then, with men on first and second and no one out, grounded into a fielder’s choice, beating out the double play. Matt Chapman grounded out to Voit to score Pinder to extend the lead to 7-0. In the sixth, two two-out doubles by and Chapman added to the A’s lead again, making the score 8-0 A’s

The Yankee offense awoke from its slumber, that started the second they got the bases loaded, in the seventh, starting with a leadoff walk by Hicks. Gary then worked himself a great seven pitch at-bat that culminated in a two-run home run, finally ending the night of Mike Fiers who dominated the Yankees for six innings up until that point. The offense sputtered from there and then went back into its slumber.

A scoreless rest of the game from both sides resulted in a very bad, very sloppy 8-2 loss for the Yankees. Severino, who you hoped could start to look like himself with Gary back behind the plate, was even worse than before. Meanwhile the offense was nonexistent (other than a late two-run home run when the team was already down eight) without its only consistent hitter, Miguel Andujar who had the day off. And with the series loss, the A’s come to within four games in the loss column of the Yankees for home field in the Wild Card Game.

What’s Next?
The Yankees get the day off tomorrow (today technically), and go to Seattle on Friday to begin a three game set with the Mariners. First pitch Friday at 10:10 PM, with the pitching matchup being Masahiro Tanaka against James Paxton.

Article by: Nick Simonelli

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