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Neil Walk(er)-Off home run takes the Yankees past Chicago

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Walker’s homer completed a comeback after the Yankees trailed by four in the sixth inning.

MLB: Chicago White Sox at New York Yankees Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

For a lot of this game, it seemed like a slightly altered version of yesterday. The Yankees’ starter didn’t have a bad day, but left with his team losing thanks to a combination bad luck and some poorly timed (from a Yankees’ perspective) hits for the White Sox.

Unlike yesterday, the Yankees didn’t blow a lead, though. In this one, the Yankees’ offense struggled from the outset. They recorded just four hits off the 2018 version of James Shields in 5.2 innings. Lance Lynn’s three runs allowed in 5.2 innings isn’t great, but the lack of run support was more so the problem.

However, this offense is potent enough to strike in a flash, and that’s just what they did. Miguel Andujar and Aaron Hicks got the Yankees back into the game with a pair of two-run home runs in the sixth and eighth innings.

Then a couple solid innings from Jonathan Holder, and a really good one from Dellin Betances kept the score in place for Neil Walker. He recorded his second walk-off hit of the year, homering to bring the Yankees all the way back, and take a 5-4 win over Chicago.

Early on, the story was the Yankees’ defense making mistakes, and Lynn managing to just do enough to bail them out. That could only work for so long, and in the fifth the White Sox took a lead. With one out in the inning, Nicky Delmonico singled, and came all the way around to score when Avisail Garcia doubled.

In the sixth, Lynn got two quick outs to start the inning. Things went downhill from there. He allowed a pair of singles to Yoan Moncada and Adam Engel, which would be the end of his day. Holder came in for Lynn, but he did not do as his last name reads in the sixth. A Yolmer Sanchez single brought home Moncada, and he managed to move up to second on the throw. Delmonico followed that up with another single, scoring two runs, and making it a four run game.

The Yankees finally got some real semblance of offense going in the bottom of the sixth inning. Brett Gardner led off the inning with a triple. After a couple of outs, Andujar got the Yankees on the board with a two-run home run to cut the deficit in half. They had a chance at more when Luke Voit and Gleyber Torres both got on base. Greg Bird then made good contact on a pitch, but Garcia got a good read on the ball and managed to make the catch to end the inning.

A couple innings later, the Yankees got off to a good start when Giancarlo Stanton led off the eighth with a single. Hicks followed that right up with a home run. After seven innings of mostly meh offense, the game was tied.

Then in the bottom of the ninth, the comeback was complete. Sent up as a pinch hitter, Walker homered on the very first pitch he saw, finishing off the win for the Yankees.

People often get frustrated about “the Yankees only scoring with home runs.” That was the the case today, and it’s decent evidence for why dingers are cool.

Box score.