Tag: Zach Britton

Yankees Announce Wild Card Roster

The Yankees have announced their Wild Card roster.

Pitchers

  • Dellin Betances – 68
  • Zach Britton – 53
  • Aroldis Chapman – 54
  • Chad Green – 57
  • J.A. Happ – 34
  • Jonathan Holder – 56
  • Lance Lynn – 36
  • David Robertson – 30
  • Luis Severino – 40
  • Masahiro Tanaka – 19

Catchers

  • Kyle Higashioka – 66
  • Austin Romine – 28
  • Gary Sánchez – 24

Infielders

  • Miguel Andújar – 41
  • Didi Gregorius – 18
  • Adeiny Hechavarría – 29
  • Gleyber Torrres – 25
  • Luke Voit – 45
  • Tyler Wade – 12
  • Neil Walker – 14

Outfielders

  • Brett Gardner – 11
  • Aaron Hicks – 31
  • Aaron Judge – 99
  • Andrew McCutchen – 26
  • Giancarlo Stanton – 27

Red Sox 2, Yankees 3: Walker’s 10th Homer the Difference-Maker

No clinch for Boston.

THE BRONX – Neil Walker crushed his 10th homer of the year off Ryan Brasier to give the Yankees a 3-1 lead in the seventh inning Tuesday, en route to the first Yankee win over Boston since July 1.

The bridge to dominant closer Craig Kimbrel has been sketchy all year for Alex Cora‘s Red Sox, though their 103 wins would say otherwise. Nathan Eovaldi was masterful for six innings, allowing two hits in six shutout innings before being pulled with just 83 pitches. Brandon Workman entered to start the seventh and walked both Aaron Hicks and Gary Sánchez (with Miguel Andújar popping up on a likely ball 4 in between).

Cora went to Brasier, and Aaron Boone elected to stick with Walker at the plate and Sánchez on first. This time, Boone won. Walker smoked a 3-2 slider into the second deck at Yankee Stadium, and he knew it. As he left the batter’s box, he pointed to the Yankees dugout. The Yankee offense finally got a jolt.

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David Robertson pitched a scoreless eighth inning, which included some uncharacteristically lackadaisical defense from Aaron Hicks. J.D. Martinez doubled into the gap, and the ball got past Hicks. The center-fielder jogged after the ball, and simply tossed it to the cut-off man while Martinez motored into third. Robertson induced two fly balls to render the issue moot.

But, bad defense was the theme of the ninth inning as Zach Britton was brought in to close. Brandon Phillips was thrown out 2-3 on a strikeout to start the frame, and then things got frustrating. Adeiny Hechavarría, who replaced Andújar for defense, threw a 5-4-3 double-play ball away by throwing it to the arm side of Gleyber Torres (which was unfairly ruled an E4). Sam Travis then hit a tapper back to Britton, and he threw a sinker on a potential 1-4-3 double-play ball into center field. That allowed Brock Holt, who walked, to score. But, two pitches later, they finally got it right. Ian Kinsler hit a ground ball back to Britton, and they finally got the 1-4-3 needed to push a Red Sox clinch celebration back at least another 24 hours.

Britton understood the magnitude of the situation, as he was given an opportunity to atone for the mistake he committed. One play after throwing the ball into center field, he was able to throw a strike to Torres that allowed him to record his sixth save on the season. The difference? A return to the fundamentals of throwing a baseball:

“The balls were wet,” Britton said. “So after the error that I made, I just thought, if I find the other one, I’ve really got to find the four seams and make a good throw to second and make sure we got one out.”

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Not to be lost in Tuesday’s big win was the performance of J.A. Happ. The veteran delivered another quality start, allowing an unearned run (because of a Sánchez passed ball) on four hits and three walks. He recorded six strikeouts, and 65% of his 102 pitches were strikes. In the third inning, Kinsler singled, moved to second on a phantom balk call (seriously, it’s hard to see), and scored on a Martinez sacrifice fly after moving to third on the passed ball.


Aaron Judge got through his first full game since July 26 without a setback. He went 0-for-4, hitting the ball hard three times before getting rung up on a questionable check-swing call in his final at-bat.

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Judge, of course, was not originally supposed to start Tuesday. But, the six-hour delay in start time allowed him to hit in another simulated game, and convince the Yankees decision-makers that he was ready to go.

“I just voiced my opinion. A lot,” Judge said after the game. “I think they got tired of me telling them I wanted to be playing. So they finally said let’s put him in there and see what happens.”

Rangers 3, Yankees 5: Andújar Saves the Day

THE BRONX – Miguel Andújar‘s clutch two-run home run in the seventh inning off Chris Martin proved to be an important differencemaker Saturday at Yankee Stadium.

The 23-year-old cracked his 17th homer on the first pitch he saw from Martin, sending a 94-mph fastball into the right field seats. That proved to be the difference as the Yankees claimed a 5-to-3 victory. Giancarlo Stanton singled ahead of Andújar before the rookie connected.

Stanton got the scoring going for the Yankees in the first inning, driving a 3-0 fastball from Drew Hutchison into the left field seats for his 29th homer of the year. Andújar singled one batter later, and Greg Bird lined a double that scored him from first base.

Lance Lynn allowed his first (and only) run as a Yankee in the third inning. Shin-Soo Choo led off with a double to center field, then moved to third on a Rougned Odor ground out to the over-shifted shortstop Didi Gregorius. Elvis Andrus then lined a single to right field that allowed Choo to score.

That lead held until the seventh, when Zach Britton entered. With two outs, Choo and Odor singled, then Andrus walked. Next batter Adrián Beltré worked a walk with the bases loaded, and another run came into score when new reliever Dellin Betances balked in the tying run.

That set the stage for Andújar’s homer, and the rookie came into the game batting .293/.348/.483 in high-leverage situations (per Baseball-Reference). David Robertson and Betances each did not allow a run, and Aroldis Chapman pitched a scoreless (yet eventful) top of the ninth.


What’s Next:

The series finishes off with a battle of lefties. CC Sabathia (6-4, 3.49 ERA) will look to reprise his 12-strikeout performance from August 7 against the White Sox. Martin Pérez (2-4, 6.15 ERA) is coming off a no-decision where he allowed three runs in seven innings August 6 against Seattle.

Yankees 4, White Sox 3: Miguel Andújar, Sonny Gray Star in Wild Extra-Innings Win

CHICAGO – If someone told me pre-game that Sonny Gray would be a key piece to tonight’s win, I wouldn’t believe you.

The right-hander who watched Lance Lynn throw 7⅓ shutout innings in his rotation spot last night took on his new role in a tough situation. After Zach Britton blew a save by allowing a two-run home run to José Abreu in the bottom of the 10th inning, Gray entered in the 11th and got nine outs while allowing just one hit and one walk.

The Yankees got the lead for good in the 13th inning. Didi Gregorius worked a one-out walk, and moved into scoring position on Luke Voit‘s first Yankees single. Two pitches later, Miguel Andújar golfed a changeup from Luis Avilán into left field to score Didi.

Unfortunately, the Yankees thought they had won the game three innings prior. Brett Gardner worked a walk in the 10th after pinch-hitting for Shane Robinson in the seventh, and Giancarlo Stanton powered a two-run shot off Tyler Danish to give the Yanks a 3-1 advantage.

That did not stand, however, as Britton could not hold the lead. Omar Narváez was drilled as the first batter and then Abreu powered a 1-1 sinker deep to center to tie the game.

The first seven innings of the game proved to be a pitchers’ duel. CC Sabathia struck out 12 White Sox hitters in his 5⅔ innings of work. Reynaldo López did not allow a hit until the sixth inning against the Yankees. Abreu hit a sacrifice fly in the third, and Andújar homered in the seventh for the only runs in regulation.


What’s Next:

Luis Severino faces off against Lucas Giolito looking for a Yankees sweep.

Yankees 4, Red Sox 5: Chapman’s Meltdown & More Sloppy Defense Lead to Benintendi Walkoff

BOSTON – Well, let’s hope this is rock bottom.

After Aroldis Chapman walked three batters in a ninth-inning that also featured a low throw from Miguel Andújar that Greg Bird could not handle, Jonathan Holder allowed a game-winning RBI single through the shift to Andrew Benintendi that officially sunk the Yankees in Beantown on Sunday.

The hard-throwing lefty issued free passes in the ninth to Sandy León, Mookie Betts and Steve Pearce after the Yankees gained a 4-to-1 advantage over their rivals in the seventh inning. J.D. Martinez singled to make it 4-to-3, and then Andújar did not step into his throw on a Xander Bogaerts grounder down the line. Bird could not dig it out, and pinch-runner Jackie Bradley Jr. scored the tying run.

Holder was assigned the 10th inning. After recording the first two outs, León poked a pitch about five inches off the outside corner into left for an opposite-field single. The first pitch to Betts, the next batter, got past Austin Romine (ruled a wild pitch, and he had a passed ball earlier in the game) to get León into scoring position. Betts was intentionally walked and León replaced with pinch-runner Tony Renda. Four pitches later, Benintendi’s grounder beat the shift and Fenway Park erupted into pandamonium.

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It seemed like things would finally break the Yankees way as they scored four runs in the seventh inning. Brett Gardner led off with a single and then Romine worked a walk. That drove David Price from the game, who had an uncharacteristically strong start against the Yankees. Heath Hembree came on, and proceeded to throw three pitches around the head of Shane Robinson, provoking a stare from the Yankees reserve outfielder and some shouts from the Yankee bench. Robinson was looking to move up the runners with a sacrifice bunt, but ended up walking on a 3-2 slider that missed high.

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Five pitches later, Aaron Hicks hit a sharp ground ball up the middle that ate up shortstop Xander Bogaerts and wound up in center field. Both Gardner and Romine came around to score. Next, Giancarlo Stanton gave the Yanks a 3-1 lead with a single to score Robinson. After a Didi Gregorius strikeout, Gleyber Torres lined a sacrifice fly to center field for their fourth and final run.

Before Chapman imploded and Holder gave up the game-winning hit, Yankees pitching largely did their job Sunday night. Masahiro Tanaka had to grind through 4⅔ innings, leaving with 97 pitches on his ledger and his lone mistake being a solo home run allowed to Betts. Sans-high-socks David Robertson pitched a scoreless 1⅓ innings, while Zach Britton and Dellin Betances each battled command issues to throw scoreless frames of their own.

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Alex Rodriguez said on the Sunday Night Baseball broadcast that a three-run lead at Fenway Park is like a one-run lead at any other ballpark. That rang painfully true for a Yankees team that desperately needed to win before getting on a plane to Chicago. They now sit 9.5 games back of Boston in the American League East race, and just 2.5 games ahead of the surging Oakland Athletics for the first Wild Card spot.


What’s Next:

The Yankees turn to Lance Lynn to make his first start (but second appearance) in the place of Sonny Gray, whose consistently subpar performance saw him demoted to the bullpen. Lynn threw 4⅓ scoreless innings of mop-up relief August 1 against Baltimore after being acquired from the Minnesota Twins for Tyler Austin and Luis Rijo.

The Yanks will face righty Dylan Covey in Chi-Town, who will be making his 15th start. So far, he has a 4-7 record and 5.57 ERA. He has faced the Yankees once, and gave up eight earned runs on 10 hits through five innings of work last season.

Royals 2, Yankees 7: Injury Concerns Cloud Series-Opening Win

THE BRONX – On a day where the Yankees consummated a trade for a high-profile starting pitcher and scored seven runs to win a game, the focus sits on injury concerns with Aaron Judge and Sonny Gray.

Judge started as the designated hitter today, but was drilled in the vicinity of his right wrist on a 2-2 pitch from Jakob Junis. He stayed in the game to run the bases, and also recorded an infield single in his second at-bat. However, Miguel Andújar came in to pinch-hit for him once the No. 2 spot in the order came up again.

In the fifth inning, Alex Gordon hit a hard ground ball up the middle that Gray slowed down with his pitching hand. The trainers came out to check on him, and after a few warm-up pitches, he stayed in the game to finish the fifth inning. His velocity was down a few ticks at this point, but he managed to get out of the inning with no runs allowed. Undoubtedly, Gray would have continued to pitch since he was removed with only 75 pitches but the Yankees figured it was not worth the risk since they were up by seven runs at that point.

The Yankees scored early and often, pushing across two in the first inning on a Giancarlo Stanton sacrifice fly and later a fielding error hit into by Gleyber Torres. The Yankees got four in the fourth, thanks to an RBI double by Austin Romine and a three-run (all unearned) home run by Didi Gregorius. Didi only got to hit because Andújar reached on a brutal error by Royals’ shortstop Adalberto Mondesí. Greg Bird hit a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning for the Yankees’ seventh and final run.

The Royals scored their two runs once Gray was lifted for Adam Warren. Mike Moustakas hit his first pitch for a ground-rule double, and then two pitches later, Salvador Pérez took him deep to center for a two-run shot.

Things got hairy for Chasen Shreve in the ninth. He came on in relief of Zach Britton, who threw a 1-2-3 inning in his Yankees debut. Jorge Bonifacio singled, and then was replaced by Alex Gordon on a forceout. After striking out Brian Goodwin, Mondesí recorded a single that got Aroldis Chapman loose in the Yankees bullpen. Whit Merrifield followed with a single to center, but Gordon barreled through Mike Jirschele‘s stop sign at third base. Aaron Hicks fired to Romine at the plate and Gordon was out to end the game.

Game 101: Reinforcements Arriving

Zach Britton is active for the first time as a member of the New York Yankees, and newly-acquired J.A. Happ is set to join the team tomorrow.

Sonny Gray is coming off two straight wins, and hopes to keep that rolling tonight for the Yankees. In those starts (11⅓ innings pitched), he has allowed just two earned runs on six hits. He has 14 strikeouts to just four walks in that timeframe as well. Gray had one of his best starts on the season in Kansas City against the Royals on May 20, pitching eight innings and allowing one run on four hits.

Jakob Junis makes his second start against the Yankees in 2018. He got the win May 18 behind 5⅓ innings of two-run ball. Since then, he has a 2-7 record and 6.75 ERA. He only last four innings his last time out, giving up one run on four hits before exiting after just 77 pitches. The shortened outing came because he missed a few weeks with lower back inflammation.

Brandon Drury‘s bench spot will be taken by Shane Robinson, who was selected to the 25-man roster once the Happ trade was official. Luis Cessa was optioned to create a roster spot for Britton. The Yankees 40-man roster is now at 40 players.


Royals Lineup:

  1. Whit Merrifield – 2B
  2. Rosell Herrera – RF
  3. Mike Moustakas – 3B
  4. Salvador Pérez – C
  5. Lucas Duda – 1B
  6. Jorge Bonifacio – DH
  7. Alex Gordon – LF
  8. Brian Goodwin – CF
  9. Adalberto Mondesí – SS
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