About Last Night: Yankees 2, Orioles 0
Despite the Yankees' recent injury troubles, they continue to find ways to win. On Wednesday night, New York used a solid first start by JP Sears to take another win from the Orioles, as they held on for a 2-0 victory.
Quick Stats - JP Sears picked up a win in his first start, his second win of the season, with Clay Holmes picking up his fifth save of the year. Miguel Andújar led the way for the Yankees' offense, picking up their only RBI and a key stolen base that resulted in their other run.
Big Story - JP Sears had a great spring and got a short glimpse of MLB action in April, but with the Yankees' recent injury problems, he got his chance for the first start of his career. He pitched two scoreless innings earlier this season, picking up his first career win. That also happened to be against the Orioles.
The young hurler had to contend with some tough moments early on but handled them with impressive poise. Gleyber Torres had a shot at a double-play in the first, but he botched it, putting the rookie in trouble immediately. Sears got two quick outs and then, after falling 3-0 to Ryan Mountcastle, he battled back and got the K to end the inning.
Sears dealt with two base runners again in the second, but once again escaped damage. He was able to throw five strong innings and hand over a 2-0 lead to the bullpen but held on for the win.
Player(s) of the Game - Miguel Andújar is my player of the game, having gone 2-3 with the Yankees' only RBI, he looked more like the old Anjújar last night. He had confidence at the plate that served him and the Yankees well. He also had a stolen base, testing the Orioles' catcher and top prospect, Adley Rutschman's arm. The ball went into the outfield and Torres was able to score for the insurance run.
Notable Performances - JP Sears went five innings and gave up just three hits and two walks, while picking up five Ks.
Ron Marinaccio came in for the sixth and seventh and threw two solid innings. He didn't give up a hit or a walk and struck out three.
Better to Forget - Aaron Hicks' struggles continued at the plate and in the field. He went 0-4 in the leadoff position, striking out once. He didn't look great in the field either, failing to take charge on a fly ball that should have ended the game.
My Take - For the last few seasons, it seemed like the Yankees couldn't get past the first week of the season without some kind of crucial injuries hampering them. This year has been a pleasant departure from that cycle, but their good fortune seems to have run out a bit between people being put on the COVID IL, along with Stanton, Chapman, and Loaisiga going down and Chad Green needing Tommy John.
This has given players like JP Sears and Miguel Andújar opportunities in the Bronx, and they both took advantage of that on Wednesday. Andújar doesn't look like someone who is filling in, but rather someone who wants to prove something. It's just another example of how this team is able to find wins from any number of places.
Next Up - The Yankees start a series against the Rays tonight, sending Nestor Cortes to the mound. Nasty Nestor has been fantastic this season and has a 3-1 record with a 1.80 ERA and 56 Ks. The Rays send Ryan Yarbrough out for his fifth appearance of 2022. He has a 4.20 ERA and only 12 Ks in 15 innings of work, which includes three starts. First pitch is at 6:40 pm at Tropicana Park in Tampa.