Montgomery's Gem Wasted As New York Yankees Bullpen Implodes
May 23, 2017; Bronx, NY, USA; Kansas City Royals left fielder Jorge Bonifacio (38) is congratulated by designated hitter Salvador Perez (13) after hitting a two run home run against the New York Yankees during the seventh inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

Despite Jordan Montgomery‘s best start to date, the New York Yankees bullpen was unable to hold a 2-1 lead en route to a 6-2 defeat. 

  • Kansas City Royals 6 (19-26)
  • New York Yankees: 2  (26-17)
  • American League, FINAL, Box Score
  • Yankee Stadium, Bronx, NY

What is usually a strong suit with these New York Yankees has been the opposite as of late, as the bullpen was unable to hold a two-run lead en route to a 6-2 loss to the Kansas City Royals in front of a crowd of 35,931 at Yankee Stadium.

Even though Royals’ starter Danny Duffy started his night with three no-hit innings, New York was able to draw first blood via Aaron Hicks‘ eighth home run of the season — a laser beam the other way to right field to give his squad a 1-0 lead.

Chris Carter, who entered play with the sixth-worst wRC+ (79) among Major League first baseman with at least 90 plate appearances, followed the leader by smacking a solo home run of his own the very next inning.

With the Yankees up 2-0, Montgomery was cruising along until Lorenzo Cain took the southpaw deep to left field on a 93 mph fastball up and in to put the Royals on the board. After manager Joe Girardi pulled him, reliever Adam Warren served up a base hit to Salvador Perez before allowing a line drive two-run shot to right to Jorge Bonifacio to put the Royals ahead by a score of 3-2.

The Royals didn’t stop there at getting to one of baseball’s best bullpen’s, as Whit Merrifield took Jonathan Holder deep in the eighth to extend the lead to 4-2. Mike Moustakas then joined the homer party as he homered off Chasen Shreve following an Alcides Escobar hit-by-pitch to further Kansas City’s torture of New York’s bullpen.

Warren, Holder and Shreve combined for five earned runs over 1.1 innings of work and allowed one home run each. All in all, it led to a disappointing 6-2 loss which snapped the Yankees two-game winning streak.

Baby Hurler: 

When Montgomery struck out Jorge Soler in the top of the third inning, he became the seventh pitcher in Yankees history to strike out 40 or more batters in his first eight career starts.

The other six were Masahiro Tanaka (66), Al Leiter (57), Orlando Hernandez (54), Luis Severino (45), Dave Righetti (45) and Phil Hughes (40).

What’s Next: 

The Yankees and Royals will square off in the third of four games in the Bronx on Wednesday night. Luis Severino is scheduled to make his ninth start of the season. Over his last two starts, the 23-year-old has tossed just 7.1 innings after going seven innings in four of his five previous starts.

First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. ET and can be caught on the YES Network or on the radio at WFAN 660/101.9 FM.