If you missed the Yankees’ game today consider yourself fortunate. With a nod to Warner Wolf, if you had the Yankees and plus-five runs, you lost. Detroit posted six runs against the Yankees, while the Yanks’ bats continued to be as menacing as milk. The 6-1 loss was the fourth in five games for the Yankees, and they now face the prospect of being swept by the AL Central cellar-dwelling Tigers tomorrow afternoon.
In the top of the second inning, the Yankees struck first in familiar fashion. That is to say, they scored and took the lead while simultaneously missing an opportunity to do serious damage. Detroit starter Spencer Turnbull walked three batters and gave up a single, but the Yankees came away with only one run due in large part to a 6-4-3 double play off the bat of Miguel Andujar in a bases-loaded, no-out situation. The GIDP added to the Yankees’ rather frustrating MLB lead in rally-killing ground balls.
It didn’t take long for the Tigers to return fire if you can call control problems from both Yankees’ starting pitcher Deivi García and second baseman Rougned Odor returning fire. After a HBP and walk sandwiched a single, Detroit second baseman Willi Castro bounced a grounder to Odor’s right that Odor fielded then promptly threw past first baseman Mike Ford. The ball was ruled a hit and an error on the throw allowing the runners to advance. When all the advancing was over, Detroit scored two on the play and took a 2-1 lead after two complete innings.
The third inning saw both pitchers restore order with respective three up, three down half innings. The Tigers struck again in the bottom of the fourth, however, when after a strikeout of Nomar Mazara, Tigers’ catcher Eric Haase drove a ball all the way to the left center field wall. Given the distance to the wall in left-center field in Comerica Park is measured in acres, and that Haase is the cliché of the catcher who runs “pretty good,” he was able to slide into third base with a relatively easy three-bagger. Niko Goodrum followed with a sacrifice fly to center, scoring Haase and extending the Detroit lead to 3-1.
Castro led off the bottom of the fifth with what the kids call a “hustle” double, which Detroit’s Jeimer Candelario followed a batter later with a double of his own. When Castro crossed home plate, the Tigers had a 4-1 lead, and Yankees’ manager Aaron Boone had seen enough, replacing García with Albert Abreu. Abreu did no favors to García’s ERA when he uncorked a wild pitch that advanced Candelario to third, which Miguel Cabrera followed with a sacrifice fly to center field, giving the Tigers a 5-1 lead.
If the inning wasn’t ugly enough for the Yankees, it got there pretty quickly when Jonathan Schoop took Abreu deep to left, expanding the Tigers’ lead to five. A great play by Yankees’ left fielder Miguel Andújar on a hard sinking line drive off the bat of Mazara kept the inning from getting worse and brought it to a merciful end.
Turnbull and four Detroit relievers held the score right there over the last four innings, as the Yankees lost their second in a row in Detroit and fourth out of five overall, on a final score of 6-1.
It’s been said the best part about baseball is that there is a game tomorrow. The Yankees will take that mantra into a Sunday matinee and they’ll be looking to avoid the sweep as they do so. First pitch is 1:10 pm.