Aaron Judge
Courtesy IG: @yankees

The New York Yankees didn’t let COVID-19 issues get them down when they won series against both the Rays and the Orioles this past week.

The New York Yankees didn’t have many pretty wins this week, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The Bronx Bombers won some key games and two key series during an arduous road trip.

Let’s cue the music!

The week got off to an ominous start on Monday, when seven coaches and support staff returned positive COVID tests in Tampa. A day later, shortstop Gleyber Torres tested positive and hasn’t played since May 9. All this happening under Tropicana Field’s roof just added insult to injury.

But just like our dear friends The Goonies, the New York Yankees never say die. Rather than fold under this cloud of bad news, the team actually had a pretty decent week.

Now, the Yankees need to channel this energy into the rest of the road trip.


Return to The Florida Project

Tropicana Field was finally kind to the New York Yankees as they finally won a road series, taking two out of three from the Rays.

First, the Yankees got some great news to start the week when first baseman Luke Voit was activated from the injured list. Despite his return, the bats were quiet and New York got by on absolutely stellar pitching. On May 11, Jordan Montgomery shut the rays down for six innings of one-run ball with nine strikeouts as the Yankees edged a 3-1 win.

But the following evening, Gerrit Cole did it so much better. His eight shutout innings with 12 strikeouts and no walks were enough for the Yankees to win 1-0.

Sure, they didn’t pull off a sweep, but the New York Yankees proved their pitching could keep up with the Rays’. If anything, it’s a confidence booster to look to for when Tampa Bay visits New York at the end of the month.


Banged up in Baltimore

Death, taxes, the New York Yankees playing well in Baltimore.

Alright, so this wasn’t the usual Bronx Bombers domination in the Charm City, especially with Gleyber Torres out of the lineup. The Yankees were also without Giancarlo Stanton, who missed the series with quad tightness. Aaron Hicks kept the first aid parade going as well, hitting the IL with a torn tendon sheath in his wrist.

That still didn’t stop the Yankees, who overcame Corey Kluber’s struggles on Friday to win on the back of Gio Urshela’s pinch-hit home run. Saturday, two Aaron Judge home runs carried an 8-2 win before Montgomery was uncharacteristically ineffective in just three innings Sunday.

Even still, the New York Yankees won yet another series and are still just two games behind the Boston Red Sox. The race for the AL East continues.

It also helps that Judge has hit .571 with five homers on the road trip so far, raising his batting average from .245 to .298. Perhaps if he gets hot, so will the rest of the lineup.


Looking ahead

The New York Yankees visit the new Globe Life Field for the first time for four games with the slumping last-place Texas Rangers. Afterwards, they return to the Bronx for a weekend set to give the Chicago White Sox a lesson in which city makes the real pizza.

Josh Benjamin has been a staff writer at ESNY since 2018. He has had opinions about everything, especially the Yankees and Knicks. He co-hosts the “Bleacher Creatures” podcast and is always looking for new pieces of sports history to uncover, usually with a Yankee Tavern chicken parm sub in hand.