So far this year, I think Aaron Boone has done a fine job, but this past week leads to some second guessings.
You don’t want to burn out your bullpen too early in the year, but in the past week, we’ve seen CC, Tanaka, and tonight German, be left in perhaps one inning too long.
That isn’t all on Boone, but it does accentuate the need for the Yanks to get another starter. It is becoming more and more apparent how much losing Jordan Montgomery (35 MLB starts, 11-7, 3.84, ERA+ 117—-17% ABOVE league average) hurt.
The Yanks won’t be able to catch Boston with 2/5 of the rotation being Sonny Gray (6-7, 5.46, ERA+ 78) and Domingo German (2-5, 5.49, ERA+ around 77). 100 ERA+ means league average. Gray and German are over 20 percent worse than league average. The two combined are 8-12, ERA about 5.47. That won’t get it done.
They need to find another starter.
German, for whatever reason, struggles in the first inning. He gave up 1 run in the first and 3 more runs in the second.
The Yanks got 3 in the fifth on a double by Bird, walk to Andujar and double by Walker that plated one run. A second run scored on a WP. Later in the inning, Gardner’s SF plated a third run.
But right after the Yanks got back into the game by cutting it from 4-0 to 4-3 in the top of the fifth, German gave two runs right back.
The Yanks got a run in the eighth, but Boone made a bad decision this inning that could have cost the Yanks the game and opened himself up to a lot of second-guessing. Wade doubled, went to third on a PB and scored on a groundout. 6-4 Indians. Judge was HBP. But with Judge on first and one out, Hicks struck out and Judge was caught stealing. A strike him out, throw him out DP—with Stanton on deck.
Even if Judge makes it, Cleveland probably walks Stanton intentionally to set up a force at any base and pitches to Bird instead.
Now I am aggressive as anyone, but there, I keep Judge at first, don’t send him, and that way I keep Stanton as the tying run, in case he hits a HR… which he later did.
Of course, he did it with a different pitcher on the mound, and in a different situation. But Stanton homered (23) to lead off the ninth to make it 6-5. But that’s where it ended.
Boston FINALLY lost, so the Yanks (61-32) stay 3 1/2 back.
Gardner 2 rbi.
Stanton HR #23
Bird 2 hits
Wade 2 hits.
Wade has had a 2-hit and 3-hit game in the past week. Maybe the Yanks (until Torres returns) should play him more than Walker?
Walker seems to be this year’s version of Chris Carter. A guy the Yanks are holding on to far too long, far after it is apparent he isn’t doing anything for you, but a guy the Yanks don’t want to admit they made a mistake on.
So at 61-32, the Yanks are 45-18 with Torres, 16-14 without. Now Torres, although probably the favorite for Rookie of the Year so far (Ohtani and Andujar would be in the mix), won’t win the MVP, he should draw some MVP consideration based on those numbers.
German (L, 2-5, 5.49) 4 + IP, 6 R, 5 H, 4 W, 6 K.
Holder 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 W, 2 K. 1.85
Shreve 2 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 1 W, 3 K. 4.54.
German looks like he has good stuff. He can’t channel it or be consistent with it. He’s had chances. He hasn’t taken advantage of them. You wonder how many more chances he will have. He could have taken the bull by the horns. He hasn’t.
David Hale signed with a Korea team.
Aroldis Chapman will rest his aching knee and not pitch in the All Star Game.