Joe Girardi always thinks about the big picture. Truth be told he could’ve won both games of today’s double-header, but instead he realized his bullpen was a tad bit overworked the past few days. Betances, Robertson and Warren were all needed some rest by the time game two rolled around, and Joe did the right thing by resting them.
It essentially cost them the game 2, as Alfredo Aceves gave up a solo homer in his first inning of work. Vidal had the lead for most of the game, but gave up a two-out go ahead homerun to Starling Marte in the sixth inning. Yangervis Solarte got the Yankees back into the game with a monstrous homer to right, but Aceves gave the lead right back by allowing a homer to Harrison. Harrison is not exactly a homerun hitter, and this isn’t exactly Aceves first bad game.
In a normal game the Yankees would be able to go with Betances/Kelley, Warren, and Robertson to get the win. But injuries and a heavy workload force Joe to use his lesser relievers. Of course remains why didn’t he use Jose Ramirez, who has a lot of potential? I feel that question is fair, but it was a semi-high leverage situation and Ramirez hasn’t even pitched that much in AAA. Would I use Ramirez? Yes, but I understand why Joe would go with Aceves.
With that said the Yankees had a good day overall, as they got back into first place, and they had two decent performances from Nuno and Kuroda. Kuroda had one really bad inning where he kept the ball up, but overall he looked good. A bad defensive 4th inning seemed to really tire him. Robertson, Warren, Daley, Thornton, all did a good job in game 1.
Offensively the Yankees have to love the fact that Brett Gardner is ignited their offense at the top of the lineup, today he hit a double a triple, a single and 2 walks. He continues to work the count and get on-base. He is picking up Jacoby Ellsbury who has started to struggle. Teix, and Mccan also had important hits today, and Solarte hit a couple really hard outs today. Jeter also showed some signs of life at the plate, as he got what could have been an important PH single in the second game. He probably would’ve scored the game tying run, if Harrison didn’t make an amazing play in left.
It’s a shame that they wasted a good start by Nuno, but overall these two games showed what their pitching is capable of doing. They just need to wait out some injuries, and get their team to full strength. Once Aceves is replaced by Phelps/Whitley and Claiborne is replaced by Kelley, this pen will be very, very good.