It was a bit of another pitchers’ duel this afternoon in the Bronx. Right up until the Blue Jays suddenly remembered they are the current runs-scored leader and then they blanked the Yankees unfortunately.
It was also “cowboy hat day” in the Bronx today. Yes, the Yankees’ gave the first 25,000 guests a straw-colored cowboy hat with the interlocking NY logo, trying to give credence to the term “urban cowboy”, I presume. The City just held its first country music festival this year. It’s like New York City has gone a little bit country this year. And I don’t know how this city girl feels about that.
Ivan Nova got the start for the Yankees in the second game of the weekend series against visiting Toronto. And honestly, with a single exception, his pitching was rather good. He threw 102 pitches into the 6th inning, struck out 6 batters, and gave up just 4 hits, 2 walks, and 4 runs. It was that pesky 6th inning that would come back to haunt Nova. With 1 out, Nova gave up both those walks and a single to load the bases and set up the next batter for a really pretty grand slam. (The first time a Blue Jays player has ever hit a grand slam off the Yankees in Yankee Stadium.) After over 5 scoreless innings for both teams, a grand slam was certainly a way to put the Blue Jays on the board in a monster way.
Nova’s day was done too. Adam Warren came on in relief for Nova and promptly threw 9 pitches to get back-to-back strikeouts to end the inning. The Yankees opted for Bryan Mitchell down the stretch beginning in the 7th inning. In that inning, he gave up a 2-out solo home run to add one more to Toronto’s score. His 8th inning didn’t start well with the lead-off batter reaching safely on a fielding error; he moved to 3rd on a single, stayed put on a nice double play, and then scored (an unearned run) on an RBI single.
Look, the Blue Jays pitchers did an excellent job today keeping the Yankees very limited offensively, giving up only 3 hits and 3 walks. They certainly earned the win today. It’s just unfortunate this is a division rival trying to chip away at the Yankees’ lead, and it’s unfortunate that it’s a home in front of 42,000 Yankee fans.
One more chance to redemption for the Yankees to beat the Blue Jays tomorrow afternoon.
Final score: 6-0 Toronto.
I blame the cowboy hats. I’ve said it before, when you’re at a loss for a valid reason for a failure (other than just general “not so great today” stuff), you grasp at whatever you can to blame shift the fault. Thus, I blame the cowboy hats.
But now, I kind of want one…