This has not been the most fun of seasons for the Yankees. Between injuries and general meh-ness, they have been an unenjoyable watch for the majority of this year. That, however, was not the case this weekend.
Thanks to a recent infusion of youth, the Yankees at the very least made themselves a source of intrigue for this three-game set at Minute Maid Park. They turned out to be more than just a curiosity, though, as they churned out a couple compelling victories and capped it off with a 6-1 win to sweep the Astros, their first of Houston in a decade.
Michael King put in a solid outing on the mound, but the real starts of the show were again the kids. Jasson Domínguez homered again, while Austin Wells had some good moments on offense and defense. Pretty much all of the youngsters contributed in a nice comeback win to wrap up a fun weekend.
The Astros struck first, picking up a run off King in the first inning. After retiring Jose Altuve to start the game, King allowed a single to Alex Bregman. Yordan Alvarez then lined a single down the right field line. The Yankees managed to hold him to just one base, but Bregman moved to third on the hit. That put him in position to score when Kyle Tucker hit a semi-deep fly out.
The Yankees’ offense had been held in check by Cristian Javier, which they do have some experience in. He kept them off the board for the first five innings, but the Yankees finally got something going in the sixth.
With one out in the inning, Oswaldo Cabrera started things off with a single. In his first two at-bats, DJ LeMahieu took two balls to the warning track only for them to both be caught, but in this third chance, he finally go something to drop in. Thanks in part to Yordan Alvarez’s knee seemingly briefly going out, LeMahieu hit a double to the wall, from which Cabrera was able to come all the way around and score, tying the game. Two batters later, it was Martian time. Domínguez came up with perfect timing for his second career major league home run, taking one out to right field to give the Yankees their first lead of the night.
King ended up going five innings, allowing just one run on five hits. After he left, the Yankees brought in Tommy Kahnle. While he’s dealt with some struggles of late, he impressed in this one, going two innings and retiring all six batters he faced. For the eighth, Jonathan Loáisiga was brought on. He ran into some trouble, allowing singles to Jeremy Peña and Yainer Diaz. However, he made a nice play to start a double play, ending the inning after that.
Ahead of the bottom of the ninth, the Yankees picked up some insurance runs. To start, Gleyber Torres demolished a ball to the Minute Maid Park train, hitting a 435-foot home run. Anthony Volpe followed that with a single, from which he came around to score when Austin Wells got in on the act with a double. Oswald Peraza tacked on one more when he scored Wells with a single.
With a five-run lead, Clay Holmes came on for the ninth. It took him only two pitches to get the first two outs, and just nine in total to seal the win and triumphant sweep.
Annoyingly, the Yankees will have Labor Day off tomorrow, before they return home for Tuesday. Waiting for them there will be a Tigers team that the Yankees just took three of four from in Detroit, so hopefully they can continue to pick up some wins then. Gerrit Cole is expected to get the start in the series opener with first pitch coming at 7:05pm ET.