Monday, August 10, 2015
Statement Made. Make One Back, Yankees.
The Toronto Blue Jays wanted to make a statement: That they can win the American League Eastern Division.
Statement made, and delivered.
Except that's not the biggest statement made this weekend.
A single by Carlos Beltran in the 2nd inning. A single by Didi Gregorius in the 3rd. Walks to Mark Teixeira and Brian McCann in the 4th. Gregorius hit by a pitch in the 5th. A walk to Beltran and a single by Chase Headley in the 7th. A walk to Brett Gardner in the 8th.
That's all the baserunners the Yankees got yesterday. They never even got a runner to 3rd base.
A home run by Josh Donaldson in the top of the 1st. If you thought the game was over right there, it would have been completely understandable. A home run by Jose "No, No, I Swear, I've Never Used Steroids" Bautista in the 4th. All hope should have been gone at that point.
Masahiro Tanaka pitched well enough to win: 6 innings, 2 runs on 3 hits and no walks, 5 strikeouts. Between them, Adam Warren, Justin Wilson, Branden Pinder and Chasen Shreve pitched 3 innings, allowing no runs on 2 hits and 3 walks.
9 innings. 2 runs. 5 hits. 3 walks. That should have been enough for the Yankee bats to, at the very least, send the game into extra innings.
It wasn't. And therein lies the problem.
Blue Jays 2, Yankees 0. WP: Marco Estrada (10-6). SV: Roberto Osuna (10). LP: Tanaka (8-5).
The Yankees once led the AL East by 7 games. Now, the lead is a game and a half -- but 3 in the loss column, as the Yankees have 3 games in hand.
There are 10 regular-season games remaining between the teams -- 3 this coming weekend in Toronto, 4 later on in The Bronx, and then 3 more in Toronto.
When the Yankees had 13-run and 12-run outbursts against the Chicago White Sox, and a 13-run outburst against the Boston Red Sox, I thought, "Save some of those runs for when they don't come so easily!"
In this 3-game sweep by those pesky Blue Jays, the Yankees scored exactly 1 run.
Here is the statement that needs to be made: Not good enough!
Today is a travel day, as the Yankees face the Indians in Cleveland. Then, off to Toronto.
Here is the statement that must be made: "We are the New York Yankees, and you are not. The AL East is ours, and you will know why."
Make the statement, Yankees. It is time. There are 52 games to go.