The “Chief” Jacoby Ellsbury drives in four as he and Sonny Gray lead the New York Yankees to a big win over the Seattle Mariners.
- New York Yankees 6 (69-59)
- Seattle Mariners 3 (66-64)
- W: Sonny Gray (8-8, 3.26 ERA)
- L: Yovani Gallardo (5-10, 5.78 ERA)
- AL, Final, Box Score
- Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York
‘Way to go, Chief!’ could be heard throughout the stands at Yankee Stadium as Jacoby Ellsbury went 2-for-4 with a three-run bomb, lifting the Yankees to a 6-3 victory over the Seattle Mariners. In a time where the Yankees are really struggling to produce with runners in scoring position, Ellsbury came up aces twice as he and the Bombers evened the series with Seattle.
Getting lost in Ellsbury’s big day was a stellar performance by Sonny Gray, who was once again outstanding. The man with the moniker “Pickles” on the back of his jersey tossed seven impressive innings, allowing just one run while striking out nine Mariners.
While Gray was dealing through the first few innings, the Bombers finally got that first big hit with runners in scoring position as they grabbed the lead early.
Starlin Castro and Greg Bird worked back-to-back walks to open the second. After Chase Headley dropped a beautiful bunt to move both runners over, Ellsbury drilled a single into left, just in front of Mariners left fielder (and former Yankees prospect) Ben Gamel for a 1-0 lead.
Chief comes through with an RBI single and we're on the board!
1-0 us after 2 innings. pic.twitter.com/g4cwk75OjN
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) August 26, 2017
While Castro scored with ease; third base coach Joe Espada curiously waved Bird home despite the ball being in Gamel’s hand as Bird touched third, resulting in the not-so-fleet-footed first baseman being thrown out at home for the second out of the inning. The next batter, Austin Romine, drilled a ball deep into the outfield that Bird would have scored easily on, had Espada not unintelligently tried to score a guy fresh off the DL with ankle problems.
The M’s were quick to respond, however, as they collected their first hit of the day when catcher Carlos Ruiz launched a long fly ball that stayed just inside the left field foul pole for a game tying solo shot in the top of the third.
Hail to the Chief
Ellsbury’s monster day continued in the bottom of the fourth as the man with “Chief” on his back certainly did his part to lead his tribe to victory in today’s battle.
Bird picked up his first big league hit in over three months by smoking a two-out single to right. After Headley worked a walk, Chief blasted a deep fly ball over the wall in right for a three run go-ahead blast.
That had to feel great for a guy who was only hitting at a .237/.320/.364 clip with six homers coming into today’s game.
Not only was the home run big for Ellsbury’s confidence, but the four RBI brought his season total up to 31. It’s always nice to get about an eighth of your season total of RBI in one game. And if the Yankees have any visions of catching the Boston Red Sox for the division crown, they’re going to need a lot more of this out of him down the stretch.
Someone Else’s Turn
It took until the bottom of the seventh for someone not named Ellsbury to drive in a Yankee base runner.
After Romine and Brett Gardner reached on back-to-back singles to begin the frame, Didi Gregorius worked a two out walk to load the bases. The next batter, Starlin Castro, smacked a single into left that scored both Romine and Gardner to make it a 6-1 ball game.
Making It Interesting
After Gray’s day was over, the Yankees bullpen and defense let Seattle back in the game in the top of the eighth.
Left-hander Chasen Shreve began the inning by allowing a ringing double to pinch hitter Danny Valencia. Nelson Cruz then smoked a ground ball to third that was fielded cleanly by Headley, but his throw sailed over Bird’s head at first, allowing Cruz to reach and Valencia to take third.
The throwing error proved costly immediately as Kyle Seager ripped a single off of Castro’s glove and into right field, easily scoring Valencia from third to make it a 6-2 game. Shreve was lifted for Tommy Kahnle; who got the first two men he faced, but allowed a RBI single to Guillermo Heredia, pulling the Mariners to within three at 6-3.
Fortunately, Kahnle got pinch hitter Robinson Cano to ground out to second to end the threat and the frame. Dellin Betances followed suit in the newfound save situation by retiring the M’s in order to nail down the Game Two victory.
The Bombers will look to carry this newfound head of steam and lock down the series victory tomorrow afternoon. New York sends Masahiro Tanaka (9-10, 4.86 ERA) to the bump to build off his outstanding outing his last time out in Detroit. getting the victory while allowing three earned in seven innings.
Seattle looks to their rookie left-hander Andrew Albers (2-0, 3.60 ERA) to right the ship and leave Yankee Stadium with a series win of their own. First pitch is scheduled for 1:05 p.m. ET and can be seen on the YES Network/TBS(for those out of market) and heard on WFAN 660/109.1 FM.