Bullpen Wins the Day. NY 5 KC 2

The Yankees threw a bullpen day at the Royals on a Wednesday afternoon in Kansas City, and beat them easily, 5-2. The Yanks scored 3 in the 1st inning and cruised to the 9th as Lucas Luetge (the ‘opener’) and 5 other Yankee pitchers combined to go 9 innings, allow 7 hits and only 2 runs. In the 9th, Zack Britton got consecutive double play balls — one botched and one made — to end the game with the tying run at the plate.

1. Yanks JUMP on Top 3-0 in 1st

The Yankees jumped on top in the 1st against Royals’ 24-yr-old, 6’4 righty Brady Singer. DJ LeMahieu led off with a walk, and after Brett Gardner struck out, Aaron Judge singled, Joey Gallo walked to load the bases, and Luke Voit singled in 2.

Rougned Odor then singled in a run to make it 3-0 before Andrew Velazquez ended the inning with a double play.

2. Yanks Take 5-1 Lead

The Yanks chased Singer in the 4th — Tyler Wade led off with a double, and after a flyout, stole 3rd base. DJ LeMahieu singled him home.

Then Brett Gardner singled LeMahieu to 2nd, and Aaron Judge singled LeMahieu home (although Gardner was thrown out at 3rd).

3. Yank Bullpen Mows ‘Em Down

Meanwhile the Yankee bullpen mowed them down. Luetge allowed a run in the bottom of the 1st — but it was an uneventful lone run created by KC’s energetic Whit Merrifield — who hit a leadoff single, stole 2nd — his 33rd consecutive successful stolen base attempt, moved to 3rd on a flyout, and scored on a groundout.

KC’s other run came in the 5th to make it 5-2 NY — Cam Gallagher led off with a double off Albert Abreu. Whit Merrifield then hit a line drive shot to left center that Tyler Wade made a terrific diving catch on. It moved Merrifield to 3rd, and he scored when Yank shortstop Andrew Velazquez momentarily bobbled a grounder to him, throwing a hair late to 1st. Abreu ended the inning by getting Perez to ground into a double play.

KC Threatens in the 7th

Chad Green ran into some trouble in the 7th — with 1 out, Rougned Odor made an error to allow Gallagher to reach, and Whit Merrifield singled him to 3rd. With 1st and 3rd and 1 out, Whit Merrifield tried to steal 2nd and was thrown out by Yank catcher Rob Brantly. It broke Merrifield’s streak of 33 consecutive stolen bases without being thrown out.

The Bullpen Story:

  • Luetge pitched 2 innings, allowing the 1 run
  • Abreu pitched 2.1 innings, allowing the 1 run
  • Joely Rodriguez pitched .2 innings shutout ball
  • Chad Green pitched 2 shutout innings
  • Jonathan Loaisiga pitched a shutout inning
  • Zack Britton pitched a shutout inning

4. Britton Is a Double Play Machine

In the 9th inning, Zack Britton hit Ryan O’Hearn to lead off the inning, but then got Michael Taylor to hit a double-play grounder to 1st that the Yanks took the fielder’s choice on — getting O’Hearn at 2nd.

With 1 out, Britton got Emmanuel Rivera to hit a tailor-made double play grounder to 2nd that should have ended the game, but Odor threw the ball away.

With still 1 out, and the tying run at the plate, Britton got Carlos Santana to hit into a double play to 3rd base that was turned for the old ballgame.

“Zack Britton is always 1 pitch away from a double play,” has said Aaron Boone often in the past.

The Boxscore


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