New York Yankees

The New York Yankees have dropped their second straight contest to the Arizona Diamondbacks after winning seven of their previous ten games. 

  • New York Yankees: 3 (16-22)
  • Arizona Diamondbacks: 5 (19-23)
  • Interleague, FINAL, Box Score
  • Chase Field, Phoenix, AZ
The New York Yankees have lost their first series since May 5 as they drop Tuesday night’s affair with the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-3.

Their starter, Michael Pineda managed to fan a season-high nine batters tonight, but he also surrendered five runs on nine hits and one walk. Big Mike has now increased his season ERA to 6.60 and has not won a game since April 6th in a start in which he gave up six runs.

The big mistake for Pineda was in the bottom of the fifth inning when Jake Lamb cranked a two-run shot into the pool over the right center field wall to put Arizona up 5-1.

On Monday night, Lamb went 3-for-4 with a home run and continued his tear on the Yankees with a two-RBI game.

Zack Greinke opposed him and went seven innings of three-run ball and struck out seven. Coming into this game, his ERA against the Yankees was at 5.92 but just improved after an impressive outing from last year’s CY-Young runner-up.

Starlin Castro, like all year, was the most consistent hitter in the Yankees’ lineup tonight as he went 2-for-4 with a home run.

New York’s offense went quietly up until the eighth inning when the Bombers made this seemingly quiet contest into a competitive one.

It all started with back-to-back singles by Didi Gregorius and Aaron Hicks followed by an RBI groundout by pinch hitter, Carlos Beltran. The very next batter, Jacoby Ellsbury, smacked a base hit to left field to score Hicks to bring the Yankees within two runs.

Unfortunately for New York, Daniel Hudson bounced back to strike out Brett Gardner and Mark Teixeira to end any further trouble.

Then, 36-year old Brad Ziegler close out the game and secured a 5-3 victory for the D-Backs. It’s their second win in a row after being swept in a four-game set to the San Francisco Giants.

Big Mike Has A Big Problem:

2016, nicely put, has been a horrifyingly discouraging one for Michael Pineda and for one weird reason: he can’t pitch in the opening portion of the ballgame.

Big Mike’s ERA in the first three innings is at a solid 9.00 and batters are hitting .371 off him. In innings 4-6? His ERA falls to 3.06 while batters hit a mere .206 off the righty.

Through his first 25 pitches, hitters are 17-for-34 (.500) with four home runs but if you fast forward to pitches 51-75, the opposition is 6-for-49 (.154) with only one home run.

Why? Well, there’s a reason we call Pineda a “Big Mystery.” One can lose their minds when they try to locate the source of the problem for Pineda so, for now, fans can only sit tight and pray that Pineda busts out of this funk.

The only way to do that is if he starts trusting his nasty arsenal of pitches.

Defensive Play Of The Day:

There can be some positives that come out of losing efforts and Mark Teixeira’s web gem in the bottom of the seventh was a prime example of it.

Welington Castillo ripped a sharp line drive to the Yankees’ first baseman, who was the only one on the right side of the infield, who snagged it out of the air on a diving attempt.

His home run drought may be over the century mark, but it’s good to see his glove is still as golden as ever.

This Day In Yankees’ History:

On this day in 1998, David Wells made sure his name would be included in the record books after pitching a perfect game against the Minnesota Twins.

Wells fanned 11 batters and became the first member of the New York Yankees to pitch a perfect game since Don Larsen tossed one in the 1956 World Series against the Brooklyn Dodgers. At the time, it was the 13th perfect game in Major League history.

What’s Next:

The final game of this three-game set from Phoenix will take place tomorrow night at 9:40 PM ET at Chase Field. Nathan Eovaldi will square off against Shelby Miller.

Eovaldi has expressed true power when on the mound this season as his fastball velocity ranks only behind Noah Syndergaard’s 96.9 average MPH fastball.

Nasty Nate has used it more often lately in order to attack hitters and that has been his key to success. In his last two starts (both wins), he has struck out nine across 13 innings pitched while maintaining a 3.46 ERA.

Miller, on the other hand, has trying to improve and his last start seemed as the first step towards his return to form. Last time out against the San Francisco Giants, the righty only gave up three runs on seven hits and two walks with two strikeouts over 5.2 innings. On the year, he is still 1-4 with a 6.94 ERA.

NEXT: When Will Mark Teixeira Turn The Corner?