In the penultimate game of the 2017 season, Aaron Judge hits home run No. 52 to power the New York Yankees past the Blue Jays on an overcast afternoon in the Bronx.
- New York Yankees: 2 (91-70)
- Toronto Blue Jays: 1 (75-86)
- W: CC Sabathia (14-5, 3.69 ERA)
- L: Marcus Stroman (13-9, 3.09 ERA)
- AL, Final, Box Score
- Yankee Stadium, Bronx New York
On an afternoon that saw both players and fans alike scoreboard-watching throughout the game, CC Sabathia and the rest of the New York Yankees’ pitching staff limited the Toronto Blue Jays to just one run as the Bomber bats did just enough to capture the victory and win their final series of the regular season.
CC Sabathia cruised through 5.2 innings of sensational shutout ball before handing the ball over to his lights-out bullpen. Aaron Judge’s huge fourth inning blast helped lift his band of Bronx brothers to a must-have victory this afternoon at Yankee Stadium.
In a true playoff atmosphere, both Sabathia and Marcus Stroman were genuinely dealing through the first three frames. On defense, the Yankees used the double play ball in two out of the first three innings to escape potential trouble.
On the opponent’s side, Stroman maintained excellent command as he quietly maneuvered his way through the stacked Yankees order.
It wasn’t until the bottom of the fourth that the game saw its first scoring action. “His Excellency,” Aaron Judge, extended his hitting streak to 13 games when he unloaded on a Stroman fastball to the tune of a 484-ft blast that soared into the bleachers in left field to give the Yankees a one-run lead.
CRUSHED! ALL RISE!
No.52 for Aaron Judge giving the @Yankees the 1-0 lead. ??? pic.twitter.com/enK0UCMd2O
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) September 30, 2017
The honorable MVP candidate’s blast was also his 33rd at home, passing Babe Ruth (1921) for the most home runs at Yankee Stadium in a single season.
Following suit, Sir Didi Gregorius smacked a single to left with one out, advancing to second on a wild pitch during Starlin Castro’s ensuing at-bat. The miscue proved immediately costly as the All-Star Castro lined a single to center that plated Didi from second to extend the Bombers’ lead out to two.
CC Stands for Completely Cruising
While Judge and company were taking care of business on the offensive side of the ball, CC Sabathia put it on cruise control before giving way to the bullpen in the top of the sixth.
The big lefty started the sixth by serving up a Ryan Goins double, courtesy of a fan doing his best Jeffrey Mayer impression by interfering with the Goins fly ball. Sabathia got the next batter to strike out and was then pulled in favor of Chad Green, coming on to face the tying run in the form of Josh Donaldson. Green got Donaldson to end the threat and the frame with an innocent pop out to left.
In what could be his final regular season game in pinstripes, Carsten Charles Sabathia was an inning or two shy of just how good he was when he put on the uniform in 2009. Sabathia went 5.2 impressive innings of shutout ball, allowing just four hits while fanning six Blue Jays.
CC gets a well-deserved standing ovation as he exits. ?
His final line: 5.2 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 K.
Now let's finish! pic.twitter.com/CGUjyKX6YA
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) September 30, 2017
Too Close for Comfort
As the game made it’s way into the eighth with the score still idle at 2-0, Tommy Kahnle allowed two baserunners to reach via a weak infield single and a walk before handing the ball over to David Robertson.
Robertson struck out Goins before walking Teoscar Hernandez to load the bases for Donaldson. The 2015 MVP hit a shallow fly ball to left that was caught by Brett Gardner. Gardner immediately fired a strike home in attempts of an inning-ending double play, but the ball got away from Gary Sanchez and Ezequiel Carrera was ruled safe to make it a 2-1 contest.
Houdini Robertson, however, then got Justin Smoak to strike out to end the frame and keep the score at 2-1.
Aroldis Chapman came on to shut the door in the ninth, and did so with authority by getting the Jays in order to give the Yankees their 91st win of the season.
Unfortunately, the Red Sox looks like they will cinch the division this afternoon with their 6-2 lead with an inning to go in Fenway. But, what that does accomplish is that the playoff picture is now set with Cleveland to face the winner of the AL Wild Card game between the Yankees and Minnesota Twins, and those two teams duking it out in Boston (or Houston) set to square off on Thursday in round one of the ALDS.
With the playoff picture now set, the Yankees look to try and win the rubber game of this series in their final game of the 2017 regular season.
New York turns to young lefty Jordan Montgomery (9-7, 3.86 ERA) to try and take the final game of the 2017 season. Countering for Toronto is the veteran lefty Brett Anderson (4-4, 6.97 ERA), who will be attempting to send his teammates into the offseason on a high note.
First pitch is scheduled for 3:05 PM/ET and can be seen on the YES Network and heard on WFAN 660/101.9 FM.