Last week, Josh left you all with a little spoiler that the Yankees were about to heat up after going 4-3 in their first seven games of the 2020 season. Well, that hot streak was much shorter than we could have anticipated, as the team fell back into its mediocre play against none other than the Orioles.
Here’s what happened over this past week in the land of simulation:
April 4: Yankees 3, Blue Jays 0
Like Josh said, the Yanks began to heat up at home, shutting out Toronto on national TV. James Paxton was masterful, tossing seven shutout innings and logging eight strikeouts. His ERA on the young season is 1.31.
The Yankee offense did its damage strictly with the long ball, getting two solo shots from Gary Sanchez and another from Aaron Judge. Sanchez, batting out of the nine hole for some reason, also drew a walk, while Judge finished with three hits to lead the Bombers to victory.
April 5: Yankees 6, Blue Jays 5
A walk-off in the Bronx! After Aroldis Chapman blew a 5-4 lead in the top of the ninth, the offense bailed him out in the bottom half of the inning, helping the Yanks get their second straight victory.
Masahiro Tanaka was tagged for three runs in the top of the first, but settled down to throw five scoreless innings after, while the Yankees clawed back and took the lead behind another multi-homer game, this time from DJ LeMahieu. The Yanks trailed by one in the eighth after Adam Ottavino’s early-season struggles continued, allowing a run in the top half of the inning. But the Yanks took back the lead in the bottom of the eighth on LeMahieu’s second dinger, and later won it on a solo shot from Miguel Andujar.
Luke Voit also stroked a triple in this game, tying his mark from all of last season, to help the Yanks win the series.
April 6: Yankees 2, Orioles 0
The Yanks’ winning streak reached three games after blanking the O’s at home behind seven shutout innings from Jordan Montgomery. LeMahieu knocked yet another home run, with the second run coming on an RBI single from Sanchez to give Montgomery and the bullpen all the cushion they would need.
Side note: When simulating the week, the game paused simulation before this game to tell me that hitting coach Marcus Thames suggested sitting Gleyber Torres for this game given his recent slump. That’s right, Thames wanted Torres to sit for a game against the ORIOLES!
Marcus, Brian Cashman wants to see you in his office.
April 7: Orioles 6, Yankees 5 (18)
You read that right. The Yankees’ winning streak ends after an 18-inning marathon, and boy was the 18th inning a wild one. The game entered extras tied at three apiece, and the bullpen combo of Jonathan Holder, Tommy Kahnle and Chad Green kept Baltimore scoreless for the next 6.1 innings, but the Orioles also held the Yanks silent. Then J.A. Happ came on for the 18th and was knocked around for three runs before Chapman came on to stop the bleeding. The Yanks battled back in the bottom of the 18th, plating two against Hector Velazquez before the comeback fizzled.
The loss spoiled a strong start from Gerrit Cole, who allowed two runs over seven innings, and ruined four-hit games from Gio Urshela and Aaron Hicks, who also stole two bases.
Torres update: He finished with two hits, including a homer. Take that, Thames.
April 8: Orioles 5, Yankees 3
The Orioles steal another one in the Bronx after Aaron Boone tried to steal some outs with Luis Severino, who cruised through five shutout innings but began to labor in the sixth. Instead of taking him out, Boone left in Severino to allow three runs in the sixth and let Baltimore tie the game.
Holder gave up the go-ahead run in the seventh, the Orioles silenced the Yanks the rest of the way. On the bright side, LeMahieu is officially on fire after another home run, a three-run shot in the third to account for all of the Bombers’ offense.
April 9: Orioles 3, Yankees 0
Since Lemahieu’s three-run bomb, the Yanks’ offense has now been silenced for 15-straight innings against literally the Orioles. Former first-round pick Kohl Stewart stymied the Yankees en route to a shutout win, while Mychal Givens and Paul Fry shut the door in the eighth and ninth.
Pedro Severino knocked a two-run double off James Paxton in the second inning to give the O’s all the scoring they would need. For the Yanks, LeMahieu and Voit each had multi-hit games, but the team didn’t record an extra-base hit. Yikes.
That’s three losses in a row for the Yankees, who dropped to 7-6 on the year. Not good. A trip out West against Oakland is next.
By the way, LeMahieu’s six homers on the season is currently tied for the most in the league with Daniel Vogelbach.