The series ended in a brutal and unexpected fashion, but the Yankees got somewhat back on the right path against the Twins. They scored 16 runs across the first two games, both of which were wins. Giancarlo Stanton OPSed 1.467 with three home runs in the three games, while Miguel Andújar continued his hot hitting with six hits and two walks in Minnesota.
However, the Twins are not very good this year, and the Yankees quite famously do very well against them anyway. It’s going to take more than one good series to truly get back on track, and they can start that tonight against the Phillies.
After a weird Friday night off, the Yankees will kick off a two-game set tonight in Philadelphia. We’ll see a lot of familiar faces on the other side between manager Joe Girardi and former Yankees Ronald Torreyes, Andrew McCutchen, and David Hale. One notable former Yankee we won’t see is Didi Gregorius, who’s been out since May with a hip injury.
Those familiar faces have helped keep the Phillies in the playoff race (3.5 games back of first in the NL East) but come into the series below .500 at 30-31. Their average of 4.2 runs per game is closer to the bottom of the MLB leaderboard. That said, stars Bryce Harper and J.T. Realmuto have had excellent seasons so far to lead the way for them.
Before things get underway tonight, let’s take a look at the pitching matchups we’ll see over the next two days.
Saturday: Jameson Taillon vs. Vince Velasquez
Taillon was solid in his most recent appearance, allowing three runs in 5.1 innings against the Red Sox. In general, he’s been solid for a couple starts now, putting up a 3.52 ERA since May 23rd. His issue has been that he still hasn’t been to go more than five or so innings. That Red Sox outing was his second longest of the season. He’s been the prime example of the multiple times through the lineup penalty, allowing OPS figures of .788 and 1.351 the second and third time through, respectively.
On the whole, Velasquez’s numbers work out to a bit under average. But looking at his individual games, especially his starts, not that many are actually average. On the good side, we see a May 25th game against the Marlins where he threw six shutout innings. On the other hand, in his next start, he was knocked out after three innings after giving up six runs, including two home runs. It seems that he’s either been unhittable, or extremely hittable.
Sunday: Domingo Germán vs. Aaron Nola
Since returning from his early season stint in the minors, Germán has put up a 2.35 ERA and and 0.894 WHIP. That included a good outing against Boston that he got a no decision in. While he’s put up good results in recent games, like Taillon, he hasn’t been able to go particularly deep, not getting past the sixth since May 20th.
After a pretty incredible run from 2017-20, Nola has been below average so far this year. He was very good in his first four starts, but has had an ERA near five in the nine since then. His June so far has been especially substandard, as he’s allowed seven runs in 10 innings, while allowing hitters to OPS 1.081.