The last couple of days were pretty exciting for the Yankees with Alex Rodriguez’s Friday farewell and the Baby Bomber fireworks yesterday. After all the emotions were spent, maybe they were simply due for a dud. Maybe it was simply baseball staying the course. Luis Severino or Luis Cessa both pitched poorly today, demonstrating the growing pains that accompany the excitement of standout rookie performances like Saturday.
Tampa Bay got on the board in a hurry in the top of first inning, eager to get the game going after the Mariano Rivera Day ceremonies. Logan Forsythe led off with a double to left and came around to score shortly thereafter when Evan Longoria roped a two-bagger of his own. Forsythe struck again two innings later when he belted a Severino pitch into the short porch for a solo homer.
The Yankees drew a little bit closer when Aaron Judge answered Forsythe’s solo shot to right with one of his own against Jake Odorizzi, his second homer in as many days in the big leagues. Judge went 1-for-3 with a walk, looking quite comfortable in his new regular spot in the MLB lineup. Unfortunately, Judge’s efforts would not be enough on this day, as it all came apart for Severino in the fourth inning.
The rally was just a barrage of hits. With one out, Matt Duffy grounded a single to left. Nick Franklin doubled him to third, and Corey Dickerson took lift-off with a three-run bomb into the left field seats. That blast broke the game open at 6-1, and it would only get worse. Steven Souza and Bobby Wilson immediately followed with singles, and while Severino then fanned Forsythe, Joe Girardi decided that he had seen enough.
In came Luis Cessa from the bullpen, who was rumored as a possible starter for Monday (that outing will go to Chad Green instead). It was a bad day for this Luis, too. He couldn’t escape the inning without surrendering a bases-clearing double to Longora, and while still pitching in the seventh, he allowed an RBI single to Duffy and a three-run bomb to Franklin. The Yankees scrapped another couple runs off Odorizzi thanks to a long homer by Gary Sanchez to make it 8-3, but this inning ended any faint hopes of a comeback.
All told, Luis Severino went 3 2⁄3 innings with eight hits and seven runs allowed despite seven strikeouts. Luis Cessa pitched three innings, giving up five hits and fives runs with two strikeouts. All young players go through rough outings at times, and both pitchers have yet to even turn 25 (Severino is only 22). Fans just have to be patient, and in the meantime, Severino will return to Triple-A to work on his changeup.
So the Yankees were unable to sweep the Rays and had to settle for a series victory. They will welcome the Blue Jays to town tomorrow night at 7:05pm as Green faces R.A. Dickey.