Yanks Blow Big Lead; Scratch Back for Happy Easter Sunday — April 21, 2019: NY 7 KC 6

It seemed too easy — the win on a beautiful Easter Sunday afternoon. Yank starter James Paxton was scintilating through 6 innings — 12 strikeouts, only 3 hits allowed. In the 7th he tired a bit, allowing two baserunners but then Tommy Kahnle came in to shut down KC like they weren’t there, striking out two.

The Yankee offense provided a 5-0 lead into the 8th, including a 3-run homer by Clint Frazier. “He’s shown to be a really good major league hitter. The way he can control the strike zone; the way he can impact the ball with his talent and his bat speed; he’s a dangerous man when he walks up to the plate,” said manager Aaron Boone.

This is so easy, you thought. Good starting pitching; good relievers; good offense. Nothing to it.

Not So Easy

And then Chad Green came in. Who has been struggling. And he struggled — a popup that fell for a single by catcher Martin Maldonado, a walk to centerfielder Billy Hamilton, and a little single through the infield by leadoff batter and 2nd baseman Whit Merrifield, and it was bases loaded nobody 0ut. No biggie — in comes Adam Ottavino to get the outs. Even a grand slam would make it 5-4 Yanks; more probably the Royals would get a run, maybe 2.

I went into the basement to get some paint, and came back up 5 minutes later — 5 minutes — and the score was… 6-5 ROYALS!!!!!

What had happened: shortstop Adalberto Mondesi doubled in 2 runs, leftfielder Alex Gordon homered, and cleanup hitter and DH Hunter Dozier homered! Ottavino finally settled down and got 3 of the next 4 guys out — a Bronx cheer was given to him at the Stadium.

Yankee Offense Back to Work

Now the Yankees had work to do, or the afternoon would be ruined. And work they did — Mike Tauchman immediately doubled to lead off the bottom of the 8th, moved to 3rd on a Mike Ford grounder — and with 2 outs — Austin Romine got a BIG base hit to left to tie the game.

Aroldis Chapman survived a scare in the 9th — walking Billy Hamilton who promptly stole 2nd while Chapman was busy striking out Merrifield, and then stole 3rd base (sending some Yankee fans into a time warp to the 1970s) — where he stayed as Chapman struck out Mondesi and got Gordon on a fly ball.


In the 10th, it was again Tauchman leading off the inning and the offense with a walk to the lefty reliever Jake Diekman brought specifically in to get the lefty Tauchman out. Gio Urshela walked, Thairo Estrada just called up from the minors, pinch hit for Mike Ford — and in his first major league at bat, bunted the runners over. And then with 1 out it came down to Austin Romine again — who has been VERY CLUTCH. Romine needed to hit a sac fly to win it — and hit a fly ball over the drawn in outfield for a hit and walkoff.


Zack Britton got the win. Luke Voit got a hit to extend his consecutive on-base streak to 32, longest in the majors. Mike Ford got his first major league hit in this game.

Who Are these Yankees?

If you didn’t follow the Yankees closely, or were back from vacation and tuned into this game on the radio and heard that Tauchman was on and Urshela walked and Estrada was pinch hitting for Mike Ford — you’d think those were players for the other team. Crazy season of injuries so far. Aaron Judge‘s oblique injury is now being termed severe, and he may be out more than a month. Giancarlo Stanton still out with the biceps injury, as is almost all of the rest of the starting team.

The Boxscore


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