About Yesterday Afternoon: Yanks Walk-Off With Win!
By Robert Malchman
April 23, 2023
This losing the first game of a series thing is a high-wire act. Facing a series loss again, the Yankees won a pitching duel of aces Gerrit Cole and Alek Manoah with a bullpen that stunk less than the Blue Jays, winning 3-2 in walk-off fashion. The Yanks now stand at 13-8.
W: Jimmy Cordero (1-0), 0.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K – he was at the right place at the right time.
L: Jordan Romano (2-1), 0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 K
Gerrit Cole, 5.2 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 4 K (and for comparison, Alek Manoah, 7 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K)
D.J. LeMahieu, 1-for-1, walk-off pinch-hit RBI single
Big Story: Cole and Manoah dueled each other even, though Cole bent more and was out of the game after 5.1 IP, with Manoah throwing a two-hit shutout through seven.
Anthony Volpe, after fanning in the 3rd with one out and runners on second and third (Cabrera double and Peraza walk), redeemed himself with an opposite field, wall-scraping, two-run homer in the 8th after Peraza had singled. All the Yankees needed was three outs from Wandy Peralta. Unfortunately, the magic left Wandy, who gave up a lead-off walk to Alejandro Kirk and a game-tying homer to pinch-hitter Dan Jansen. After another hit, Peralta was pulled for Jimmy Cordero, but I’m pleased he wasn’t booed given how well he has otherwise pitched this year.
But Peralta’s failure set the stage for Yankee redemption in the bottom of the inning. Anthony Rizzo led off with a double off the wall in left. Torres hit a seeing-eye grounder that Bo Bichette smothered, but could not make a play on, while pinch-runner Isaiah Kiner-Falefa scurried to third. After Willie Calhoun walked, D.J. LeMahieu pinch-hit for the slumping Franchy Cordero. Toronto brought an outfielder in to play in front of second base (one of the few shifts still permitted). On a 1-0 pitch, LeMahieu laced a walk-off single past the drawn-in shortstop.
Cole, of course, whose ERA dipped to 0.79.
DJLM for day-off, walk-off single.
Torres had two hits in his last two PAs. Is he off the schneid? That would be awesome if he could return to his performance at the plate from the beginning of season.
Finally, as Fuster and Yankeeblog (and The Who) noted, The Kids Are Alright. Volpe, Cabrera and Peraza went a combined 3-for-9, HR, 2B, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K. It’s as exciting to watch Volpe this year as it was to watch Jeter in 1996.
Better to Forget:
Magic Wandy was no wizard: 0.2 IP, 2 ER, 2 H, 1 BB, 0 K. His ERA went from 1.24 to
Willie and Franchy went 0-for-6, and they are down to .136 and .186 BA, respectively.
My (Highly Personal) Take: It is said one should never meet one’s heroes. Roy White is the exception that proves the rule. I went to the charity event involving Dr. Paul’s book with Mr. White, in a luxury suite in right field. What a great day! Roy White is every bit the gentleman you imagine him to be from his years as a Yankee coach and player. And it was an enormous treat to meet, at last, Dr. Paul in person, likewise every bit the gentleman we know him to be from his writing here. (Paul please Venmo me the amount we talked about, thx.)
It was an exciting game, very close, with the exhilaration of Volpe’s go-ahead homer in the bottom of the eighth, the deflation of Jansen’s counter in the top of the ninth, and the Yankees’ build to the walk-off base hit by LeMahieu. It’s hard to top a regular season
game like that. The Yankees again fought off a series-losing-game situation and are now 11-0 in such games.
Up Next: The Yankees face the Jays again today and are positioned to take the series. It will be a 1:35 pm affair led by Kevin Gausman (1-2, 3.65) against Clarke Schmidt (0-1, 8.79 – yecch).
NOTE - Robert, the pleasure was all mine. It was great to meet you and I enjoyed spending time talking baseball with you. It was a highlight of the entire event. What a great afternoon!
Here's the selfie we took:
TWO GREAT YANKEES FANS!