This one had it all, folks. A night after throwing away a game against the Tigers, the Yankees won a thriller in game two of the four-game series. They did so thanks to some timely hitting, big home runs, and the most memorable ejection Aaron Boone has had this year. More on that in a minute, though.
The Bombers were down a run entering the eighth inning, but Brett Gardner got things going with a leadoff double. Aaron hicks worked a walk two batters later, and eventually Luke Voit found himself up with two on and two out. Voit worked a full count, and checked his swing on a very questionable call from the first base umpire, awarding him a walk. Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire was not pleased, to say the least, and let his feelings known in an argument following his ejection.
The Yankees, meanwhile, capitalized on the opportunity. Gleyber Torres ripped a ball into left field that fell in front of Tigers outfielder Mikie Mahtook. Mahtook made an unfortunate dive at the ball that resulted in it klonking him on the head, allowing two runs to score on the play. Austin Romine followed up with a ground ball up the middle that was bobbled by Tigers shortstop Ronny Rodriguez, allowing Voit to come home and give the Yankees a 7-5 lead.
Of course, the drama couldn’t end there. David Robertson came on for the save in the ninth, and worked himself into a jam with runners on first and second with only one out. From there Robertson became vintage Houdini, striking out the next two batters to end the game.
If you can remember back to the beginning of this game, things were not going well for the Yankees. The offense was making Jordan Zimmermann look untouchable for the first five innings. Literally. They didn’t have a single hit off of Zimmermann up until that point, and found themselves slowly sinking into a 3-0 deficit.
Then things got a little wild. In the fifth, Boone took exception to home plate umpire Nic Lentz’s strike zone and got ejected. After walking out to say his piece, Boone squatted down behind home plate in the catcher’s spot and mimicked how off Lentz’s zone was. Here’s a link to a write up our Tyler posted so you can see it for yourself.
What made this ejection even more memorable though, was the immediate response Boone’s players gave him. In the sixth inning the Yankees broke the no-hitter, and in a big way. Gardner drove a 2-0 offering from Zimmermann to the short porch in right, putting the Yankees on the board and cutting the deficit to 3-2. The fun, howeve, didn’t stop there. Two batters later Aaron Hicks launched a solo shot to center to tie the game, and Miguel Andujar went back-to-back to put the Yankees ahead 4-3.
One of the things that will get lost in the commotion from the game was Luis Severino’s performance. He still wasn’t the Severino that was Cy Young worthy, but he had more things working than recently. Severino piled up 10 strikeouts to no walks, the first time Sevy has touched double digit strikeouts since June 4th, against these Tigers. He did have to labor however, and reached 50 pitches after only three innings. Overall, Sevy made it through six innings, and threw 102 pitches to get there. It wasn’t exactly a grind it out start, but it wasn’t full dominance either.
The bridge from Sevy to Robertson had trouble tonight, too. Jonathan Holder was called on to pitch the seventh, but could only record two outs before Zach Britton replaced him. Britton allowed an inherited runner to score, but escaped the inning with the game tied at four. He then worked himself into trouble in the eighth, and gave up the lead on a bases loaded sacrifice fly. He managed to prevent further damage, but all in all it wasn’t a good night for him.
The series between the Yankees and Tigers will continue tomorrow, at 4:05 p.m. Masahiro Tanaka will take the mound for the Yanks, while the Tigers will activate Daniel Norris off of the disabled list to start.