Game 87. Yanks lose Pineda, blow game to Boston, 5-4.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

What an awful day.

We now know why the Yanks delayed so long in announcing their rotation setup for the Boston series.

It’s because Michael Pineda probably has thrown his last pitch as a Yankee.

Pineda was to become a free agent at the end of the year. Any chance of him ca$hing in disappeared when he was diagnosed over the All Star break with a torn UCL. Tommy John surgery has been recommended and he’ll be out for the rest of the year. He won’t return until late 2018 at the earliest, maybe not until 2019.

This is very much like what happened to Nathan Eovaldi. The Yanks let him go, and another team signed him on the cheap, waiting out 2017 with Eovaldi and hoping he’ll be ok for 2018. The same could happen with Pineda, just one year later. It does appear Pineda is done as a Yankee, much like Eovaldi was.

In the meantime, Bryan Mitchell (this Sunday) and Luis Cessa (later) will be taking Pineda’s spot. Manager Joe Girardi said that Chance Adams isn’t ready for a callup to the big leagues yet. Despite a great record, Girardi stated that Adams still has some things to work on first.

As for a trade to get a pitcher, we’ll see. You know the other teams will hold the Yanks up, knowing they are desperate.

Also, it was revealed that Greg Bird has had yet another setback and surgery on his ankle is looking more and more likely.

Garrett Cooper made his MLB debut for the Yanks last night, and it was a rough one for him, as he struck out three times.

Then there was the game, which the Yanks blew by giving up 2 runs in the bottom of the ninth to Boston. Boston won 5-4. The Yanks are now 45-42, and and 7-19 in their last 26 games.

The loss dropped the Yanks into third place in the AL East, 4 1/2 games behind Boston. Tampa Bay jumped into second.

Boston didn’t even hit the ball out of the infield in scoring those two runs.

The bullpen, which was such a strength in April and May, has become a disaster.

In this 7-19 skid, TEN of the Yankees’ losses have been by one run. TEN.

Some problems: While they are 26-17 at home, they are 19-25 on the road. They have to start winning on the road.

More importantly, they need to start winning one run games. They are 9-18 this season in one-run games. Unacceptable.

They scored first on a Gary Sanchez RBI single in the third, but Boston’s Hanley Ramirez hit a 2-run HR in the bottom of the frame to put the Red Sox up 2-1. Boston got an RBI single from Dustin Pedroia to put Boston up 3-1 in the fourth.

Jordan Montgomery only lasted four innings. Chad Green did another great job in relief and probably should be considered for the later innings and more important work.

In the fifth, Headley doubled, Gardner singled in a run, and Sanchez hit a 2-run HR (14) to put the Yanks up 4-3.

In that bottom of the ninth, Aroldis Chapman gave up two infield hits, and a double steal put men on second and third with no one out. Ronald Torreyes’ second error of the game enabled the tying run to score, and after an intentional walk to load the bases, Chapman walked in the winning run.

Chapman, who the Yanks signed to a five-year deal this offseason to bring him back, hasn’t been the dominating Chapman of years past. He spent some time on the DL earlier this year, and you wonder if that usage in last year’s postseason by the Cubs is having an after effect. A 3.92 ERA is quite high, esp. for him.

The bullpen has to get straightened out. The Yanks have to start closing out these one-run games, not blowing them. It seems like Chad Green has been the only good, consistent bullpen guy lately, maybe Warren, too.

The Yanks have three more games in Boston this weekend (day/night DH Sunday) then go to Minnesota and Seattle. By the time the trip is over, we’ll know a lot about whether this team is still in it or not. These next two weeks are important, both from a win/loss standpoint and for what the team does in the trade market.

The Yanks did get Matt Holliday back last night (rough night, 0 for 4, 3 strikeouts) and should get Starlin Castro back off the DL today.

But they don’t pitch, and the Yanks need to be shutting down opponents late in games.

Montgomery 4 IP, 3 R, 6 H, 3 W, 3 K. Gave up 1 HR. 3.78
Green 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 5 K. 1.80.
Warren (H, 7) 1 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 W, 1 K. 1.96
Betances (H, 9) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 3 K. 1 HBP 3.07
Chapman (BS, 3; L, 2-1; 3.92) 0 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 H, 2 W, 0 K.

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