Pitchers Duel. Yanks Have Top Gunslinger. 3 Reasons Why NY 2 Cleveland 1 on 4-24-21

Pitchers Duel. A good old fashioned one. Gunslinger on the right — the Yankees Gerrit Cole, arguably the best pitcher in the American League. Gunslinger on the left — Shane Bieber, defending American League Cy Young winner. In Cleveland on a cool (50’s) April Saturday evening.

The winner…

1. Gerrit  Cole

Gerrit Cole has never won a Cy Young Award. Shane Bieber outdueled him for it last season, when Bieber finished 8-1 1.63, leading the AL in wins and ERA, to Cole’s 7-3 2.84 in the COVID-shortened season. Cole led the AL in ERA the year before in 2019 in a full season when he went 20-5 2.50, but teammate Justin Verlander beat him out for the award.

In this game, Cole allowed the first run — with 1 out in the bottom of the 4th, Jose Ramirez tripled and Eddie Rosario singled him home. Cole struck out the next two batters and that was it for Cleveland’s scoring for the evening.

Cole pitched 7 innings, allowing 3 hits, striking out 11 in getting the win.

2. Yanks Homers Undo Bieber

The Yanks got right back at Bieber in the top of the 5th — Aaron Hicks hit a 1-2 fastball for a Homerun to tie the game.

Two batter later, Rougned Odor — the 30-homer-a-year 2nd baseman the Yanks picked up a week ago — hit a 3-1 changeup for a homer and Yankee 2-1 lead.

The 27-yr-old Rougned Odor — who hit 30 or more homers 3 times with Texas — is going down as one of the great Yankee pickups in recent history.

And that was it for the scoring.

Bieber lasted thru the 7th — Cleveland’s manager kept him in thru 119 pitches — tying his career high.

Cole pitched through 7 innings as well — finishing with 111 pitches. DJ LeMahieu helped Cole out by making a terrific defensive play in the 7th, snaring a popup by the dugout for the 2nd out — retiring the big (6’5) dangerous homer-hitting Franmil Reyes on a 3-2 pitch.

After the smoke cleared:

  • The 26-yr-old Bieber, a 6’3 righty, is now 2-2 2.48 on the year.
  • The 30-yr-old Cole, a 6’4 righty, is now 3-1 1.71

Cole is now the leading Cy Young candidate in the American League.

3. Loaisiga Lights Out

With Aroldis Chapman, Chad Green, and Darren O’Day all having pitched the night before — the Yankee bullpen was Justin Wilson and Jonathan Loaisiga.

Wilson pitched the 8th but was a little wild — getting an out but then walking Roberto Perez and wild-pitching him to 2nd base. Wilson got a pop out but with the game-tying run on 2nd and 2 outs, manager Aaron Boone called on Loaisiga to get Amed Rosario out, which he did on a popout to shortstop.

Loaisiga got 3 straight outs in the 9th for his first save. And the Yankees had won their 3rd in a row, 4th in 5 — to improve their record to 9-11.


The Yankees only got 5 hits again. The batting averages for the Yanks and throughout baseball are anemic. Evidence that the ball is still lively — as a lively baseball MOVES when pitchers throw it — allowing every pitcher to look like Cy Young — lots of strikeouts; low batting averages — but if someone hits it it’s gone — lots of homers.

Aaron Judge went 1-3 with a walk and is at .250 but terrific OBP of .377. Gleyber Torres and Giancarlo Stanton got the other Yankee hits.

The Boxscore


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