About Yesterday Afternoon: The Yankees lost to the Blue Jays 10-9
By Time Kabel
June 20, 2022
The Yankees wrapped up a three-game series against the Blue Jays, riding a nine-game winning streak. They were 33 games over .500. The Yankees were 8-3 against the Blue Jays this season and led them by 12 games in the standings. They were looking to sweep their third series in a row. It is all peaches and cream for the Yankees these days. It is as if they are floating down a lazy river in an inner tube, sipping on a cool drink. They just have to hope the river runs all the way to October. Today, they hit some rapids in the river. It happens. Sometimes, the best team in baseball loses a game. Sometimes, the President of the United States falls off his bicycle. Life goes on.
I’m confused about something. The Blue Jays were the flavor of the month at the beginning of the season. They were the consensus choice to win the division, and possibly the World Series. Yet, they were a dozen games behind the Yankees and just nine games over .500 as the game started yesterday. You could easily describe the Blue Jays’ season as a disappointment so far. That leads me to my confusion. Whenever one of the Blue Jays hits a home run, he dons the special home run jacket and parades through the dugout like a conquering hero. It seems a bit incongruous to me. It is comparable to giving an A-caliber student a party for getting a C on a spelling test. It’s fine to have swagger, but if you can’t back it up, you wind up looking like Barney Fife. The Blue Jays won today but, they are still eleven games behind the Yankees.
Quick Stats (and a thought):
The Yankees entered play yesterday with a 12-game lead in the standings. The combined leads of the other five division leading teams were 19 games.
Yesterday was the first time this season that Yankees’ pitchers gave up 10 or more runs.
At the beginning of the season, who would have ever thought that Jose Trevino would pinch hit for Joey Gallo?
The Yankees have not swept the Blue Jays in Toronto in 19 years.
On yesterday’s date in 1903, Lou Gehrig was born.
The Yankees lost yesterday because the bullpen blew a big lead. It is not possible to win every game. Besides, they had a chance to take the lead in the 9th inning. The Yankees won five of the first six games in this tough stretch of games. They have seven games against the Rays and Astros left. I certainly wouldn’t get too upset over this loss. In fact, it will probably get them fired up as they head into Tampa, and they always have a grudge to settle when they play Houston.
Player of the Game:
Gleyber Torres had three hits, including a home run and three RBI.
Anthony Rizzo had a pinch-hit home run.
Better to Forget-
The pitchers, especially Miguel Castro and Wandy Peralta.
The Yankees are having an amazing year. It is on par with the 1998 season. There is a possibility that this team’s record could be even better. The important thing to know is that they are winning consistently. They cannot win every game, of course. What I found to be most impressive about today's loss was the fact that they were still fighting up until the very end. Last year, the team would have simply written this off as a loss and not put up much of a fight. However, they were in a position to tie if not win the game when the final out was made. To me, that shows something. They have won more games than any other team this year. Yet, they were not ready to give this game up. I think that bodes well for the future.
Another issue that has been brought up is that the Yankees might need some reinforcements. This could be particularly true in the bullpen. Well, don't forget they have improvements coming. Domingo German, Jonathan Loaisiga, and Aroldis Chapman will all be returning fairly soon. Chapman will be assuming a different role but, imagine having Chapman, Loaisiga, and Michael King, setting up Clay Holmes. I also believe Clark Schmidt will eventually play a key role for this team. He has shown glimpses of true talent. Actually, they have been more than glimpses. He will not be able to start for this team but, he could definitely be a prime contributor out of the bullpen. He reminds me of Phil Hughes in the 2009 season.
It is possible that the Yankees acquire players from other teams. I don't believe they will trade for another starting pitcher but, they could add a bullpen arm if they feel it would help. They could also acquire another outfielder to replace Aaron Hicks or Joey Gallo or both. In almost every championship year, the Yankees acquired somebody in the middle of the season who played a major role in the playoffs and the World Series. I do not think this year will be any different. I suspect Matt Carpenter will serve as a DH or a pinch hitter in the postseason. What I'm discussing now is more of fine-tuning than a major overhaul. Clearly this team does not need a lot of changes or additions. One or two talented players could be just what it takes to put them over the top.
Tonight, the Yankees open a three-game series in Tampa Bay against the Rays at 7:10 PM. Tampa Bay's Shane McClanahan (7-3 1.84 ERA) will face Gerrit Cole (6-1 3.33 ERA).