Brett Gardner, New York Yankees
(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

The Yankees take the third game of a four-game set with Baltimore thanks to timely hitting and quality pitching on a cold day in the Bronx. 

  • New York Yankees 8 (5-4)
  • Baltimore Orioles 3 (3-6)
  • W: Sonny Gray (1-0, 3.60 ERA)
  • L: Chris Tillman (0-2, 8.68 ERA)
  • AL, Final, Box Score
  • Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York

After suffering a heartbreaking, extra-innings loss to these same Baltimore Orioles a night ago, the New York Yankees needed to come out Saturday and remind everyone exactly why they were preseason favorites to go to the World Series.

That’s exactly what they did.

Sonny Gray worked through six effective innings and the Yankee offense enacted their revenge on the O’s. With CC Sabathia and Brandon Drury hitting the DL, the Yankees needed—and got—contributions from up and down their roster.

Highlights

Run-Down City

Sonny Gray began the game in the exact fashion the Yankees’ brass envisioned: recording the first six outs on just 11 pitches. While Sonny was cruising, the Yankees jumped on Chris Tillman for a couple of runs in the second, albeit at the expense of some pretty Sandlot-esque rundowns.

Miguel Andujar started the frame with a single to center, advancing to second on a Jace Peterson groundout. Then Austin Romine hit a comebacker to Tillman, who in turn got Andujar in a run-down between second and third that saw the third baseman get tagged out.

With Romine on first, Ronald Torreyes smacked a double down the left field line that moved Romine to third. With two on and two out, the wily veteran Brett Gardner delivered a two-RBI single but got caught in a rundown between first and second.

Putting the Yankees up by two, the play left most Yankee fans wondering, “What in The Bad News Bears is going on?”.

Gray’s Middle Inning Blues

After working so effectively through the first two frames, Sonny Gray suddenly lost the strike zone to begin the third. He started the frame by walking Pedro Alvarez on four straight pitches. Then the righty served up a two-out single to Trey Mancini that moved Alvarez to second. The next batter Manny Machado(who went deep twice last night) drilled a double into left that plated both runners to draw the Orioles back even with the Bombers.

Then in the fourth, Gray’s sudden inconsistency led to Baltimore grabbing the lead when last night’s hero Alvarez smoked a double to right that scored Tim Beckham to make it a 3-2 game. Gray would go on to settle down, retiring the O’s 1-2-3 in the top of the fifth.

Get Him On, Get Him Over, Get Him In

Not normally seen in Yankee Stadium executed by the home team, but it was some small ball that got the game back to even in the bottom of the fifth.

Big Toe (Ronald Torreyes) got things going with yet another hit, this one a single up the middle with one out. The next batter, Gardner, walked, and both runners advanced a base on a wild pitch during Aaron Judge’s ensuing at-bat.

His Excellency then hit a lazy ground ball to short that saw Machado record the out at first, allowing Toe to score to make it a 3-3 ball game.

Then in the bottom of the sixth, Tillman walked the Yanks’ first week MVP Didi Gregorius on four straight pitches. Tyler Austin then smacked a single in front of left fielder Trey Mancini that saw Sir Didi execute some great base running by advancing to third on a single to left.

With Brandon Drury out, Miguel Andujar has been asked to step up, and the third baseman surely did his part as he lifted a fly ball to right that scored Didi from third to give the Yankees a 4-3 lead. Tyler Austin advanced to second on a wild pitch to Austin Romine, who plated both runners when he hit a fly ball just past the outstretched arms of first baseman Chris Davis to make it a three-run game.

Please, Sir, May I Have Some More

With all the well-documented struggles of the Yankee bullpen, Aaron Judge and the Bomber bats added some much-needed insurance in the bottom of the seventh.

Gardner started things off with a walk scoring when Aaron Judge laced a double to left to make it a three-run Yankee advantage.

Judge then advanced to third on a Giancarlo Stanton lineout to center, which was followed up with an intentional walk to the white-hot Didi Gregorius. Continuing his MVP ways, Sir Didi stole second to put two runners in scoring position for Tyler Austin. Once again, Austin came through in the clutch with a single to left that scored both Judge and Gregorius to open the score up to 8-3.

What’s Next

These two teams square off in the series finale scheduled for 1:05 p.m. ET tomorrow afternoon in the Bronx.

The Yankees send out lefty Jordan Montgomery (0-0, 1.80 ERA) to try and get the series split, following his exceptional debut on Tuesday against the Tampa Bay Rays. Baltimore counters with righty Mike Wright Jr. (0-0, 5.40 ERA), who will be looking to get both his first win of the year and the Orioles first series victory of the young 2018 season.

Tomorrow’s contest can be seen on the YES Network and the MLB Network(for those out of market) and heard on WFAN 660/101.9 FM.


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