True Grit & the Ballpen — May 6, 2019: NY 7 Seattle 3

The Yankees jumped all over Felix Hernandez for 7 runs in the first 3 innings, and the ballpen held on through some anxious multiple-baserunner innings to give the Yanks a harder-than-it-looked 7-3 victory. CC Sabathia got by on True Grit to last 5 innings and get the win — his 248th career win — CC is now 2-1 3.22 on the season. The Yankees are now 20-14 in 2nd place, 2 behind Tampa; the Mariners 19-18, in 2nd place, 3 behind Houston.

Early Batting Practice

Felix Hernandez does not look like the pitcher he once was. Luke Voit homered in the 1st; Brett Gardner homered in the 2nd; Thairo Estrada followed with a 2-run homer in the 2nd (his first MLB homerun); and DJ LeMahieu singled in a run and it looked like batting practice — Yanks 6-0 in the 2nd inning.

Gio Urshela singled in Gardner in the 3rd making it 7-0, which had Yankee twitter asking why Hernandez was still pitching; “imagine if he were a Yankee pitcher what they’d be saying!?”, we tweeted. But Hernandez then settled down and pitched a scoreless 4th and 5th — finishing with 5 innings, 7 runs, 6 earned.

CC Sabathia = True Grit

On the other hill, CC Sabathia — who is like John Wayne in True Grit — was cruising with a 7-0 lead; when he allowed a 2-run homer to Domingo Santana in the 4th it was no biggie; when he allowed a homer to Dee Gordon in the 5th it started to look like disaster could possibly be looming. With 2 outs he allowed a single to shortstop Tim Beckham, a single to Edwin Encarnacion, and then walked Santana. Up stepped homerun hitting Jay Bruce. Just like that the game (and CC’s win) was on the line.

CC was 1 against 4 — just like when John Wayne faced Robert Duvall near the end of True Grit. CC fed Bruce a strike and then got him on a ground out to 1st base.

“No grit? CC Sabathia not much!”

More Tension

The tension didn’t end there. In the 6th, Jonathan Holder came in and quickly loaded the bases in between a strikeout. With 1 out, Adam Ottavino came in and got Mitch Haniger on a shallow fly to left and then Beckham hit a slow infield ground ball that Estrada made a spectacular play on to end the inning — the play of the game.

And that was ballgame — Zack Britton and Luis Cessa came in to pitch shutout ball for the last 2 innings.

The Boxscore

http://www.espn.com/mlb/boxscore?gameId=401075253

 

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