This is not the way you draw up a win, but we’ll take it.
Despite striking out 17 times and making five errors, the resilient Yankees fought back to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth and to win it in the tenth, 6-5.
The win keeps the 34-17 Yanks two back of Boston in the AL East. So far, the strength of schedule has favored Boston. They’ve had the easier schedule to date. You don’t want to win 100-105 and wind up the wild card and have to play in that sudden-death, wild-card game. Win the division.
In the top of the first, Aaron Judge doubled up Jose Altuve off of first after catching a liner. In the bottom of the first, Brett Gardner led off with his first of two HRs of the night to make it 1-0, Yanks.
CC gave it right back, giving up a HR to Evan Gattis in the top of the second, 1-1.
With two out in the bottom of the second, Miguel Andujar doubled, and Gleyber Torres singled him home to make it 2-1 Yanks. The Yanks proceeded to load the bases but stranded the three runners.
CC gave up two runs in the fourth. 3-2 Astros.
In the fifth, sloppiness. Two errors put runners on second and third with no one out. Both runners eventually scored as Houston went up 5-2.
In the bottom of the fifth, Aaron Judge homered (15) to make it 5-3.
So it stood until the bottom of the ninth. Andujar walked, and with one out, Gardner hit his second HR of the game (4) to tie the game.
The Yanks got a break in the top of the tenth. With two out and a man on second, Aroldis Chapman, who already had thrown one wild pitch, fired one back to the backstop. It ricocheted right back to catcher Gary Sanchez, who threw the runner out trying to advance.
In the bottom of the tenth, with two out, Andujar (who made one of the five errors) doubled, and Torres (who made two errors) singled to win the game.
Not the blueprint for a win, but we’ll take it. Stanton and Sanchez are both in slumps right now. Between the two of them, they are something like a combined 1 for 35.
Gardner 4 for 5, 3 RBI, 2 HR. Heating up.
Judge 2 hits, solo HR.
Didi 2 hits.
Andujar 2 doubles.
Torres 2 hits, 2 RBI, inc. GW.
Sabathia 5 IP, 5 R, 3 ER, 8 H, 2 W, 4 K. Gave up 1 HR. 3.73
Holder 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 1 K. 2.95. Pitching great lately.
Robertson 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 W, 2 K. 4.38
Betances 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 2 W, 2 K. 4.30
Chapman (W, 2-0, 1.21) 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 1 K.