With a split of the first two games, the Yankees needed another to clinch the series against the dysfunctional White Sox, and to continue their climb back to postseason relevance. They turned to Luis Severino and his 7.74 ERA, this time in a bulk role, with Ian Hamilton starting things off. They had their fair share of opportunities throughout, but the offense wasted them and Severino was awful again. It all added up to a 9-2 loss, another atrocious series, and a new contender for worst low of 2023.
The Yankees found a new way to squander two hits in the first, as Jake Bauers and Aaron Judge started things with a pair of singles, the second of which Bauers was thrown out trying to advance to third. Gleyber Torres followed by promptly grounding into a double play.
Ian Hamilton did his job in the bottom half of the first. He walked Luis Robert with two outs, but was able to escape the inning unscathed, and deliver the ball to Severino. Sadly for us and surely for Sevy himself, things quickly returned to typical recent form. Yoán Moncada led off with a double, and was singled home two batters later. And things went from bad to worse, as Oscar Colás followed it with a two-run homer to put Chicago up 3-0.
It was a rather quick damper for the Yankees and Severino in this one, and made the concerns over the righty’s status as a productive pitcher even more pressing:
Luis Severino's ERA is up to 8.04 this season after his first inning of work out of the bullpen.— Max Goodman (@MaxTGoodman) August 10, 2023
That's the highest ERA among all pitchers that have thrown 60+ innings this season.
The Yankee bats stayed quiet in the third, while the Sox added another. Robert singled and later stole both second and third, and was eventually pushed across on a Moncada double.
The Bombers would finally get on the board against Clevinger in the top of the fourth. Judge led off with a walk and Torres followed with a single that advanced Judge to third. Giancarlo Stanton was able score Judge on a ground out, but Billy McKinney and Isiah Kiner-Falefa followed with back-to-back fly outs to end the inning. Could it have been more? Sure, but baby steps nonetheless.
Severino returned for the fourth inning, but started things with a walk to Yasmani Grandal, and was lifted in favor of Keynan Middleton. Although it wasn’t a bad idea to give Sevy a different look with the opener, it simply didn’t work. He gave up four runs on five hits over his two innings of work. The whole situation is just a bummer, and it’s coming at a time where the Yankee pitching staff is in need of some starting depth. It feels like there is no great answer if he’s not able to figure things out quickly.
Clevinger continued to roll after giving up that first run in the fourth. He quickly struck out the side in the fifth, setting down Harrison Bader, Oswaldo Cabrera, and Kyle Higashioka all swinging. He would work another 1-2-3 inning in the top of the sixth, retiring his ninth straight Yankee, and ending his night. He finished going six innings, and allowing just the one run on three hits.
Meanwhile in the bottom of the fifth, the Sox added another. Trayce Thompson singled and stole second to start the frame. He would become Chicago’s fifth run after Eloy Jiménez reached on a red-hot chopper that got by Torres, a difficult play that was ruled an error.
The Yankees had their chance in the seventh, and if the headline wasn’t an indicator, it did not go as planned. Stanton led things off with a classic effortless laser into the seats in right field:
wish I could hit a 400 foot bomb with a flicka da wrist https://t.co/eKHBVQFeGW— Pinstripe Alley (@pinstripealley) August 10, 2023
With Clevinger out of the game, the Yankees began to make their charge. McKinney and IKF followed with singles, and Bader walked to load the bases. It’s hard to accept, but in rather predictable fashion, the opportunity was squandered as Aaron Bummer came in to relieve for the Sox. Cabrera struck out looking, and Higashioka grounded into a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning. With the bases loaded and no outs, the Yankees produced a big ol’ nothing, and the score remained 5-2 Sox.
On the brighter side, Wandy Peralta worked clean innings in the sixth and seventh, to keep things where they are as we waited for the bats to wake up. They had another look in the eighth, Anthony Volpe pinch-hit for Bauers and walked, and Torres did the same two batters later, to bring up Stanton as the tying run. He waved at a slider for strike three, and McKinney grounded out, as we watched yet another prime opportunity slip through their fingers.
Looking for some insurance in the bottom of the eighth, Chicago put themselves in the right spot against Albert Abreu. A walk and a pair of singles loaded the bags for the Sox with no one out. Nick Ramirez came in, and with one down, Elvis Andrus drove a liner into the left field corner, and drove a nail into the Yankees’ coffin. It was a bases-clearing double that put them up 8-2 and they weren’t done there. Tim Anderson pushed Andrus across for their ninth run with a bloop single to center.
Elvis Andrus decided to have Elvis Night two days early. pic.twitter.com/A4xMcTRnPZ— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) August 10, 2023
Seven runs is a significant rally to have in one’s bones, and the Yankees did not have it. IKF, Bader, and Cabrera went down 1-2-3 to swiftly end things. The White Sox took this one 9-2, and took the series advantage with it. If the Yankees want to keep their postseason aspirations alive, they need to beat up on teams like this. Good teams typically do their damage against the bad ones, and while the White Sox are bad, the Yankees don’t seem to be good to the fullest extent of the word. They have outright won just one of their last 11 series (against the miserable Royals), and they once again have full possession of last place in the AL East. ‘
The Yankees have an offday Thursday, and head to Miami for a weekend series, kicking off at 6:40pm Eastern on Friday.