Well that got crappy in a hurry. The Yankees looked like they were on their way to another series victory last night with a couple early runs and a downright dominant Nathan Eovaldi on the mound. But a few bad pitches in the middle innings and an offensive disappearance flipped the script and the Yankees head back home with a disappointing loss in their pocket.
Eovaldi was a beast in the early going. His splitter had great late movement, he was snapping curveballs in for called strikes, lighting up the radar gun with his fastball. He struck out 5 in the first 4 innings, all scoreless, and worked out of a 2 on/2 out jam in the 5th by getting Troy Tulowitzki to pop up on the first pitch and striking out Michael Saunders.
The lineup wasn't giving him much support against Marcus Stroman, but they did manage to scratch 2 runs across in the top of the 4th. Stroman hit A-Rod with a pitch with 1 out, Mark Teixeira singled to right, and Brian McCann was credited with an infield single to load the bases. Carlos Beltran drove in a run on a groundout to the right side of the infield, and after Chase Headley walked to reload the bases, Teix scampered home on a wild pitch. Take 'em however you can get 'em.
Eovaldi handled the shutdown inning in the bottom half, but got into trouble with a walk to Russell Martin and a 2-out double by Kevin Pillar to give Josh Donaldson an at-bat with runners in scoring position. Eovaldi hung a 1-0 splitter and Donaldson annihilated it to center field for a go-ahead 3-run home run. It was brutal. Eovaldi backed that up by hanging a slider to Tulo in the 6th that he hit for an insurance solo job. Always nice to help break legit MVP-caliber players out of slumps.
The offense dried up for good after the 4th. Stroman got through 8 innings with hardly another threat. Jacoby Ellsbury walked and stole second in the 5th inning and the Yankees never put another man on base after that. 12 up, 12 down over the final 4 frames. Donaldson homer took the wind out of their sails, tore the sails to shreds, lit those shreds on fire, and sank the boat with a laser-guided missile.
- 6.2 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 8 K for Eovaldi. Another glimpse of what he could be in the first 4 innings tarnished by a reminder of what he still is. You can't miss like that against the Donaldsons and Tulos of the world. You just can't.
- Another scoreless appearance for Johnny Barbato. He got the final 4 outs and struck out 2.
- A-Rod hitting .120/.267/.240 with 8 strikeouts in the early going. That needs to change.
- Headley hitting .150/.280/.150. That needs to change too.