Heading into the bottom of the ninth, I was picturing that this recap was going to be mostly highlighting the bullpen. The offense struggled, Michael Pineda struck out six, but also had probably his worst outing of the spring. But the bullpen was pretty strong. In 5.1 innings in relief of Pineda, the bullpen allowed just one hit and one walk. And then a funny thing happened in the bottom of the ninth. The Yankees strung some hits together, the Astros Astros'd and suddenly the Yankees got a 3-2 win. Baseball is weird.
Pineda has been good so far this spring, but this start didn't go quite as planned. After getting the first out in the first inning, Pineda allowed a triple to George Springer. Chris Carter followed that right up with a home run to make it 2-0 Astros. Pineda would settle down after that though. He went 3.2 innings allowing two runs on four hits. The six strikeouts are a nice consolation prize though.
The pitchers who followed Pineda all pitched pretty well. Justin Wilson threw 1.1 innings, allowing no hits and one walk while striking out two. Andrew Miller followed him with an inning where he allowed no base runners and struck out two. Andrew Bailey and Nick Rumbelow had decent outings themselves. Jacob Lindgren also pitched an inning, allowing one hit while striking out one.
The problem was that the Yankees couldn't get much going on offense. They recorded four hits in the first eight innings but couldn't string any of them together to put up any runs.
But then in the ninth, the Yankees did get a rally going. Nick Noonan led off the inning with a single. Aaron Judge followed that with another single, moving Noonan to second. After Francisco Arcia struck out, Eddy Rodriguez doubled to score Noonan and Judge, tying the game. Rodriguez was also able to move to third on an Astros' throwing error. Jake Cave came up next. He popped one up to right field. It was caught, however it was deep enough for a pinch-running Slade Heathcott to tag and up score the game-winning run. Out of basically nowhere, the Yankees won the game 3-2.
Tomorrow sees the Yankees take on the Mets at 1 pm eastern. Thankfully that game will be live on YES.