Game 57: BOS vs. NYY — Teamwork shines in Saturday night rivalry game

The Yankees continue to dominate their division rivals and charge forward through some tough situations to come out on top in the end. Once again, when one teammate falters a bit, the rest of the team steps up and works things out to support the entire team. That is the true definition of teamwork in action. Also, if you’re only as good as your “weakest link”, the Yankees are pretty good this season.

Domingo German got a shaky start in tonight’s second (originally scheduled third) game of this rivalry series against the visiting Red Sox. He threw 87 pitches into the 4th inning, gave up 6 hits, 2 walks, and 3 runs, and still struck out 8 Boston batters in his short stint on the mound.

The Red Sox got on the board first in the 2nd. German gave up a single that moved to 2nd on another single and then scored on a 2-out single. After the Yankees grabbed a slim lead, the Red Sox came back in the 4th to chip it away, starting with a lead-off solo home run. A single moved to 2nd on a walk and then scored on a 1-out single. After another out, the Yankee opted to open their bullpen early.

But it proved to be a wise choice. Green, Kahnle, Ottavino, Holder, Britton, and Chapman divided up the remaining outs. They kept the Red Sox from adding to their score, getting out of just a few close calls with runners in scoring position.

Between this strong show by the bullpen and the Yankee bats, the game shifted twice into the home team’s favor when necessary. The Red Sox grabbed a small early lead, but the Yankees answered back in the bottom of the 2nd. Torres led-off with a single, moved to 3rd on Morales’ single, and scored on Gio Urshela’s 1-out single. Gardner’s soft single loaded the bases, and DJ LeMahieu’s long single scored both Morales and Urshela to give the Yankees the lead.

Then in the 5th, with the game tied and 1 out, Voit hit a nice single and moved to 2nd on a ground out. Then Gary Sanchez smacked his 18th homer of the season so far, a 2-out, 2-run home run into the Yankees’ bullpen to give the Yankees back the lead. The Yankees loaded up the bases again in that inning, but the Red Sox found enough to get a 3rd out and out of the jam.

Final score: 5-3 Yankees

Small game note: That 5th inning home run was Sanchez’s 18th home run of 2019. It’s also worth noting that Sanchez hit 18 home runs in all of 2018. A clear indication that Sanchez is easily on a streak to break his own season record of 33 from 2017. Math tells me that if he continues on his current momentum, he could potentially hit 51 home runs this year. Math also tells me that Sanchez’s 18 home runs are 19.5% of the homers hit by the Yankees so far this season (92), and Sanchez leads the team in that category.

Roster moves: After the game, the Yankees optioned reliever Nestor Cortes Jr back to AAA Scranton. This move is in anticipation of activating CC Sabathia for tomorrow’s finale against the Red Sox. Sabathia is really just trying to piece together starts in his final year and contribute when he can. After he retires, he can really focus on getting the help he needs for the next 50 years of his life, like a potential knee replacement and actually taking a summer vacation with his family.

Looking ahead: Didi Gregorius is now playing his final week of his rehab assignment with the AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders. The Yankees are looking to activate the shortstop during their trip to Cleveland next weekend should Gregorius’ week go as well as expected.

Go Yankees!

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