Game 54: NYY vs. TOR — Late inning power leads to Queen City split

I realize that a “Queen City split” sounds like something you’d find in bowling or poker. But that’s what we find as a result of this weekend’s series in Toronto. Each team taking half of the pie, with the Yankees headed home after a disappointing road trip to division rivals. What makes it worst is that it was actually a tight, really good game until late in the game.

The Yankees faced a pretty tough pitcher in the Jays’ starter, but they were able to get on the board in the 4th and keep the lead for a bit. Aaron Judge hit a 1-out single and then stole 2nd, ending up at 3rd on a throwing error. He then scored on Matt Holliday’s double. And in the 6th, Brett Gardner led off with a single, moved to 2nd on a walk, to 3rd on a fly out, and then scored on Holliday’s fielder’s choice out (another failed double play attempt).

Luis Severino got the start this afternoon under the dome, throwing 98 pitches through his 7 innings, giving up 6 hits, a walk, and just 2 runs, striking out 7 Toronto batters. And Severino didn’t give up any runs at all until the 6th inning. With 2 outs, Severino gave up a single looking to keep the Jays’ scoreless and get out of the inning. But a well-placed strike became a 2-run home run to tie up the game.

Honestly, Severino threw a really good game, ending up fortunately with a no-decision. (I always hate it when a pitcher has a great day and still ends up with a loss.) But then the Blue Jays’ starter also had a great outing. But what made the difference was the Blue Jays’ bullpen — giving up a hit, but blasting through the Yankees’ roster in just 27 pitches in 3 innings, making the Yankees collect 5 strikeouts.

Tyler Clippard needed to do the same thing, and he was on his way to doing so. His lead-off batter, a former AL MVP, worked his way to a full count before smacking a solid shot over the right field wall to give the Blue Jays the lead. Clippard admitted the pitch wasn’t where he wanted it, leaving it too high in the zone for the batter. But then Clippard was able to get the next 3 outs fairly easily.

However, the Yankees’ offense was unable to cobble anything together except 3 strikeouts in the 9th for a comeback rally.

Final score: 3-2 Blue Jays, series split 2-2.

And have you voted yet for the All-Star Game starters? Vote your daily 5 times now, and maybe help the Yankee starters rise in the ranks. You can vote every day, up to 5 times daily, up to 35 total until June 29 at 11:59 pm EST. The Yankees could be represented by Judge or Castro or Sanchez, so this could be a great opportunity for them to shine in the Summer Classic.

The Yankees travel back to the Bronx, and after an off-day tomorrow, will host the Red Sox for a three-game mid-week series. Currently, the Red Sox are 2 games behind the Yankees in the standings, coming into this next series hoping to flip that around. But wouldn’t it be kind of nice to see them behind 5 games?

Go Yankees!

{Side note: We stand with London and Manchester today as they continue to recover and heal and stand strong, united in love which defeats fear and hate every day.}

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