While they certainly received no help from the home plate umpire, the Yankees only have themselves to blame for the exasperating 5-4 extra-innings loss to the Red Sox, having left the bases loaded without scoring a run in the ninth and tenth innings. The loss was their fifth in the last six games, meaning they have only played a game above a .500 clip since June 18th. Today is a new day, and an opportunity to start a new winning stretch.
Jameson Taillon looks to get his season back on track coming off a run of disappointing starts. He has allowed at least five runs in three of his last four outings, totaling an 8.57 ERA during that stretch and a 6.81 ERA in his last seven games dating back to his June 7th start against the Twins. This coming after a sparkling 10-game stretch to begin the season in which he pitched to a 2.30 ERA without giving up more than three runs in any start. He maintains that his mechanics and pitch dynamics are in a good place — a claim video evidence and raw pitch metrics corroborate — and that faulty command and pitch sequencing are to blame for his recent struggles. In 17 starts, Taillon is 9-2 with a 4.01 ERA (94 ERA+), 3.78 FIP, and 77 strikeouts in 94.1 innings.
In fact, both starters tonight have scuffled of late, with Taillon facing Nick Pivetta. The right-hander has given up at least six runs in each of his last two starts. He’s also struggled against the Yankees this season, having surrendered four runs in 5.2 innings during the season-opening series between the two rivals and six runs in 3.1 innings last time at Fenway. Perhaps he is just the panacea needed for a Yankees lineup that isn’t scoring runs with the same ferocity of late. In 18 starts, Pivetta is 8-6 with a 4.08 ERA (103 ERA+), 3.84 FIP, and 100 strikeouts in 103.2 innings.
It’s encouraging to see Josh Donaldson and Aaron Hicks return to the starting lineup after their respective injury scares in the last week. Hicks missed two games after fouling a ball off his shin while Donaldson started yesterday on the bench after a hit-by-pit split his fingernail. Their returns to the lineup mean that Gleyber Torres and Joey Gallo get the day off while Jose Trevino replaces Kyle Higashioka at catcher.
Of note is that reliever Miguel Castro is no longer active, as the Yankees placed him on the IL with a right shoulder strain. Rather than recall yet another reliever, outfielder Tim Locastro is back with the big league club to supplement the bench.
The Red Sox meanwhile make two changes to the lineup from last night. Jarren Duran replaces Rob Refsnyder in right and atop the batting order while Franchy Cordero replaces Bobby Dalbec at first. Taillon would do well to navigate around Rafael Devers, who appears to be on a singular mission to dominate the Yankees this season. He has slugged four home runs with a 218 wRC+ in six games against the Bombers this year, so Taillon will have to be extra careful considering he’s given up seven home runs across his last four starts.
How to watch
Location: Yankee Stadium — Bronx, NY
First pitch: 7:15 pm ET
TV broadcast: FOX
Radio broadcast: WFAN 660/101.9, WADO 1380
Online stream: foxsports.com/live