It was 85° in Bronx for this afternoon’s finale against the visiting Blue Jays in the Yankees’ final home game in May. And unfortunately, it wasn’t the outcome they were looking for despite CC Sabathia’s pretty good outing today.
Sabathia threw just 83 pitches in his 7 innings, giving up just 2 hits, a walk, and 2 unearned runs, and struck out 7 Toronto batters in retro-CC fashion. It was the 3rd inning, with 1 out, when a batter reached safely on a fielding error and then moved to 3rd on a 2-out single. A walk loaded the bases before a single scored 2 runs for the Blue Jays.
The Yankees’ lone offense came too early in the game — a 2-out solo home run by Starlin Castro to get the Yankees on the board. But it would be the only run they’d score all day. Overall, they eked out 4 hits and 3 walks, but did little more to put that into something that matters. This also gave the Blue Jays closer his 10th save of the year, which partially explains why the Blue Jays rank higher in the division than the Yankees right now.
Betances sailed through the 8th inning to set-up Aroldis Chapman as the closer for the 9th should the Yankees ever pick up their offense. But with the Yankees effectively shutout following the 1st inning, the Blue Jays took advantage of a Chapman off-day — 2 strikeouts, 2 singles, and an RBI single to add an unnecessary cushion for the Canadians.
The Yankees and Blue Jays were pretty much well-matched today on all fronts, but the Yankees did beat the Blue Jays in one simple area — strikeouts. The Yankee pitchers today struck out 11 Toronto batters. A nice statistic in general actually, but rather the one positive thing in the whole rather indifferent afternoon.
Final score: 3-1 Blue Jays, Blue Jays take series 2-1.
Scranton Shuttle & Injury Update: Alex Rodriguez was activated before today’s game and came in batting 5th but failed to contribute to the offense today. A reliever we saw in Spring Training, Richard Bleier was signed to a major league contract and called up from Scranton. And the 2 corresponding roster moves were Rob Refsnyder being optioned back to Scranton and Chasen Shreve sent to the 15-day DL with a shoulder sprain in his throwing arm.
Slade Heathcott was also unconditionally released to make room on the 40-man roster for Bleier. But no worries, Heathcott fans, the Yankees can always re-sign and add Heathcott back in their farm system, just not on the 40-man until there’s a spot and need for him once again. But then again, Heathcott could very well get picked up by a team that could use a strong young outfielder. Only time (and Heathcott’s agent) can tell at this point.
And Mark Teixeira is receiving cortisone shots in his sore neck, but based on his response to the treatment is looking at returning to the lineup this Sunday against the Rays in Tampa.
Yes, the Yankees are on their way to the Sunshine State for a weekend series against the Rays before they head for a rematch of this last series in Toronto. It’s going to be a long road trip. But the Yankees did really well on their last road trip, and I, for one, am hoping that they pick up where they left off on that one and get back into the plus side of the standings once again.