The Yankees continue their West Coast trip with an upswing, dominating the Mariners in this middle game of their mid-week series in Seattle. Of course, it helps that Masahiro Tanaka was on fire tonight and came pretty close to a no-hitter.
Over 7 scoreless innings, Tanaka threw 106 pitches, gave up 7 strikeouts and 1 ball, and only allowed 3 hits. Luis Cessa took over in the 8th and faced 6 batters for 6 outs to close the game with another victory for the Yankees.
From the 1st inning, the Yankee bats showed their consistency and strength. LeMahieu hit a sharp line drive to left and then scored on a monster 2-run home run to center by Aaron Judge to get the Yankees on the board. The 3rd inning was all about the 3’s — Torres singled and moved to 3rd on Sanchez’s single to center, before Brett Gardner fired a 3-run home run to right, adding those 3 runs to the scoreboard for a solid lead.
In the 5th, Urshela doubles, moved to 3rd on Tauchman’s grounder, and then scored on Austin Romine’s grounder. And at the top of the 9th, Sanchez reached 2nd on a throwing error, and Gardner worked a walk. Urshela’s fielder’s choice got Sanchez out at 3rd, so when Tauchman was hit by pitch, the bases were loaded. Austin Romine earned a walk to bring home Gardner for another run.
Final score: 7-0 Yankees
Aaron Judge’s home run in the 1st, all 462 feet of it, was his 100th career home run. Judge became the 3rd fastest player to hit 100 career homers, in just 371 games. He fell short of former Phillies’ star Ryan Howard (with 325 games) and teammate Gary Sanchez (with 355 games).
Injury update: Aaron Hicks is due for an exam on his strained flexor muscles. After a positive assessment, hopes are that he can begin throwing soon. And Giancarlo Stanton traveled with the team to Seattle to get some workouts in, continuing his road back to pinstripes. He’s been throwing some, hitting off the tee, and running in the outfield, and today he hit some on-field batting practice before the game. Close, but not yet for these two outfielders.