About Yesterday: The Yankees Beat the Astros 6-3 in 10 Innings
By Tim Kabel
June 27, 2022
The Yankees entered the last game of a four-game series against the Houston Astros yesterday afternoon looking to earn a split in the series. This series had a playoff feel to it as the two teams battled each other closely. The way they are both playing, it would be no surprise if they did meet up in the ALCS in October.
The first pitch of the game was hit by Jose Altuve for a home run and the second pitch was fouled off, almost knocking the home-plate umpire, Mike Muchlinski, out. He eventually left the game in the middle of the third inning. The Astros also plated two runs in the fourth inning to take a 3-0 lead that they carried for most of the game.
After being no-hit on Saturday, the Yankees were again hitless yesterday going into the 7th inning, but that all changed quickly enough. Giancarlo Stanton got the team's first hit - a homer, to make it 3-1. In the bottom of the 8th inning, D.J. LeMahieu hit a two-run homer to tie the game at three.
The Yankees had a chance to win the game in the bottom of the ninth inning when Gleyber Torres made it to third with only one out, but Aaron Hicks struck out and on the play, Torres leading off third, twisted an ankle resulting in him getting tagged out to end the threat. The Astros then had a great scoring opportunity in the 10th, with runners on first and third and no outs, but Mike King pitched brilliantly to get the Yankees out of the jam.
In the bottom of the inning, with two outs, Aaron Judge launched his 28th homer. The rest, as they say, was history.
This was an exciting game, which was part of thrilling and competitive series. After all the wrist-wringing and angst, the Yankees are once again 33 games over .500 and have the best record in baseball.
Houston has been a tough opponent for the Yankees for quite some time now. It should not be a revelation that this series ended in a split. For a while, it looked like the Yankees would lose three games in a row and the series to Houston. I’m sure a lot of fans were headed toward the ledge, especially after Gleyber Torres collapsed at third base. No need to worry. This is not last year’s team. They came back and won in style.
The Yankees entered yesterday’s game having lost three of four games.
Jose Altuve has 11 home runs against the Yankees since 2019.
Before Giancarlo Stanton hit his home run in the 7th inning, the Yankees were 0-52.
The Yankees have 10 walk-off wins, which is the most before July since the Royals had 11 in 2000.
Derrek Jeter turned 48-years-old yesterday. Think about that for a minute.
The Yankees took some punches this weekend against Houston but, they gave some too. They split the series and went 9-4 during this very tough stretch of 13 games. That is a .692 winning percentage. Their overall winning percentage for the season is .726.
Here is the interesting tidbit: The .692 winning percentage, which was achieved against the Yankees’ toughest competition, is better than any other team’s winning percentage against all competition. I don't think there is anything to complain about at this point of the season. All that gloom and doom talk a few weeks ago seems silly now. As Mark Twain said, “I've had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened."
Player of the Game:
Aaron Judge had his second walk-off hit in four days, a three-run home run.
Giancarlo Stanton and DJ LeMahieu had home runs, as well.
Better to Forget:
Gleyber Torres’ injury. At first glance, it looked disastrous but, he is listed as day-to-day. As John Sterling says, “Aren’t we all?”
The Yankees are closing in on the midway point of the season. They already have 53 wins. They are on a pace to win well over 100 games. The Red Sox, who have returned from oblivion, are in second place, 11 games back. As predicted, this stretch of 13 games, which concluded yesterday, was tough. However, the Yankees emerged in fine fettle.
They next play a long stretch of games against Oakland, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, and Cincinnati, with seven games against the Red Sox mixed in, all before the All-Star game. As long as this team remains consistent and focused, they should enter the second half of the season in an enviable position. At that point, they may be able to focus on fine-tuning, resting players, and preparing for the postseason. The seven games against the Red Sox are very important. If they can maintain their current lead, or even gain a few games on the Red Sox, they will have much less to worry about moving forward. In addition, the Red Sox, Rays, and Blue Jays are all knotted very closely together. They will have to play each other, which means, they can effectively push the Yankees out of reach by beating up on each other in turn.
The Yankees will also be getting Aroldis Chapman, Domingo German, and Jonathan Loaisiga back fairly soon. I also hope they bring Clarke Schmidt back, as he pitched well in virtually every opportunity this year. I have more confidence in him than I do in Albert Abreu, although Abreu may be serviceable as well. The Yankees will get firsthand looks at players they may want to acquire when they play Oakland, Cincinnati, and Pittsburgh.
The series of games the Yankees just concluded, was like going to dinner with your prospective in-laws for the first time or having a dinner party for your boss. There was a high potential for disaster but, although it was somewhat nerve-wracking, it wasn't so bad after all. Now that it has concluded, the Yankees can simply move forward toward what is hopefully an inevitable playoff berth.
Next Up -
Tonight, the Yankees open a series against the A’s at home at 7:05 PM. Oakland's Paul Blackburn (6-3 2.97 ERA) will face Jordan Montgomery (3-1 2.98 ERA).