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Yankees 10, Padres 7: Offense cracks double digits to seal series win

After a quiet last couple days, the Yankees’ lineup came alive in the series finale against San Diego.

San Diego Padres v New York Yankees Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The Yankees’ offense had not been a strong point in recent games. Even in Saturday’s win, they only scored three, and they had only put up five runs total in their previous three games.

In Sunday’s series finale against the Padres, the offense was not an issue. The lineup put up seven runs in the third inning alone, and cracked double digits for the first time in a couple weeks (a month if you’re not counting outbursts against hapless Oakland arms). Gerrit Cole and the Yankee pitching staff had some trouble, but the luckily for them, the starting nine did more than enough work. Thanks to 12 hits, the Yankees were able to wrap up their homestand with a 10-7 win over the Padres.

San Diego got off to a hot start when Jake Cronenworth hit a homer in the second at-bat of the game. Cole allowing home run has been the main issues in his recent so-so-ness, so that wasn’t an ideal early sign. However, the Yankees answered back in the bottom of the inning in a similar manner. Aaron Judge went deep in the Yankees’ own second at-bat of the game, evening things up with his AL-best 15th dinger of 2023.

The Padres retook the lead in the second after an extremely strange sequence. While Judge had robbed Rougned Odor of a homer to start the inning, Ha-Seong Kim singled in the next at-bat and then stole second. Cole got a second out to get on the verge of escaping the inning, José Azocar then dropped a single into center, starting a wild play.

First, Harrison Bader airmailed a throw home as he attempted to get Kim at the plate. With Cole not backing up for whatever reason, catcher Kyle Higashioka corralled the ball. Azorcar, who had already advanced to second on the throw home, was on his way to third when Higashioka recovered Bader’s wild throw. At that point, Higashioka fired a throw over to third, but he too sent it high of the target. Two errors on the play allowed Azocar to get home with a “little league” home run, as the Padres opened up a two-run lead.

The Yankees again fought back, and took the lead in the third. Higashioka somewhat made up for his earlier error by leading off the frame with a double. He came around to score when Anthony Volpe singled. (That turned out to also be a bit of a wild play on the basepaths, as he slid into third before realized that he could make it home.) Volpe moved to second on the throw home. A Gleyber Torres single moved Volpe to third, where he then scored on a Judge single. Anthony Rizzo added yet another single, which scored Torres to give the Yankees the lead.

DJ LeMahieu looked like he then might give the Yankees a decent-sized lead, but a leaping catch by Trent Grisham robbed him of a home run. Judge was able to move to third on the play, which allowed him to score on Bader’s groundout. Willie Calhoun then put the cherry on top with an RBI double that knocked Padres’ starter Yu Darvish out of the game after just 2.2 innings.

The pitching change didn’t stop the runs from coming though. Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Higashioka — recording a second double in the inning — added hits, and when the dust finally settled on the frame, the Yankees had scored seven runs to open up an 8-3 lead.

A scary moment for the Yankees happened in the top of the sixth. With Fernando Tatis Jr. on first, the Yankees completed a strike him out/throw him out double play to end the inning. However as Tatis was trying to get back to the bag, he collided with Rizzo, who was making the tag, sending the Yankees’ first baseman stumbling a bit. The trainers came out to check on him, and he ended up departing in the seventh. The Yankees announced that it was an issue with Rizzo’s neck, though after the game, Aaron Boone said that tests cleared him and that he should be OK to play tomorrow.

After six fairly decent innings, Cole came back out for the seventh. A pair of former Yankees then got him, with Matt Carpenter walking and Odor homering. Cole then allowed a single to Kim, after which Boone went to the bullpen. Jimmy Cordero eventually got out of the inning, but not before Kim scored thanks in part to another throwing miscue by Highashioka.

That took Cole’s final line to six runs (five earned) allowed on four hits and three walks in six innings. He was a bit snakebit by the weird play in the second inning and had mostly cruised after that, but the last inning was certainly not what you would want from him.

Ron Marinaccio came in for the eighth, and while he hit Cronenworth with a pitch to start the inning, worked around that to throw a scoreless frame. In the bottom half of the inning, the Yankees then picked up some insurance runs courtesy of a Bader home run and a Highashioka RBI single.

Clay Holmes was then brought on to try and finish things off in the ninth, but he ran into some trouble when he walked the first two hitters of the inning. That led to the Padres sending up Juan Soto as a pinch-hitter. After falling behind 2-0, Holmes got him to ground into a fielder’s choice for the first out. A run scored on a sac fly in the next at-bat, but Holmes then induced a Tatis groundout to seal the game and series win.

With that, get ready for some late night baseball. Next up for the Yankees is a West Coast road trip, as they’re set to head to Seattle tomorrow. Domingo Germán will return from suspension to square off with talented rookie Bryce Miller; first pitch is scheduled for 9:40pm ET.

Box Score