The Yankees loaded the bases with 2 outs in the 9th inning, but Isiah Kiner-Falefa was “just” out at 1st base on an infield grounder to end the game, and end the Yankees’ 11-game winning streak. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. stretched for the ball at 1st, and then fell onto his butt and celebrated as if he’d won the World Series as the game ended. The Yankees challenged the call but it was upheld.
We would run through a wall for this man 💥 pic.twitter.com/UWMYIPtTYa
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) May 5, 2022
NY fell to 18-7; Toronto improved to 16-10.
1. Cortes Struggled Through
In the 3rd, Cortes struck out the first 2 batters but then allowed a double (to Bo Bichette), RBI single (to Vladimir Guerrero Jr., double (to Lourdes Gurriel Jr.), and walk (to Matt Chapman) to load the bases with 2 outs — before getting Santiago Espinal to ground out to end the inning. If you were listening on the radio paying half attention, you’d have thought the Blue Jays had 6 runs but after all that it was only 2-1 Toronto.
“I wasn’t throwing enough strikes,” summarized Cortes afterwards. “I walked a handful of guys. The command wasn’t there today, and that’s what ran my pitch count up.”
Cortes walked the leadoff batter in the 4th but then got a 1-2-3 inning.
His final line: 4 innings, 4 hits, 2 runs, 3 K’s, 4 BB’s in 83 pitches (51 strikes). He kept the damage limited in a game where he was not sharp.
2. Kukuchi Shuts Down Yanks
Yusei Kikuchi shut down the Yanks with 6 innings of 3-hit ball, striking out 7 and walking 1. He got his first win of the year, improving his record to 1-1 4.35.
Afterwards, he said he felt a lot more comfortable in this start after making some of the mechanical adjustments he and pitching coach Pete Walker have been making over the last couple of weeks. He said first pitch strikes, and staying ahead made all the difference.
Yusei Kikuchi, Nasty 89mph Splitter (and grip). ✌️ pic.twitter.com/v6FinY7xrc
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) May 5, 2022
3. Gallo Homer
Kikuchi made one of his few mistakes to Joey Gallo in the top of the 3rd, and Gallo hit a bomb to center to tie the game 1-1.
Far, far away. pic.twitter.com/CroHrn52zR
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) May 4, 2022
It was Gallo’s 3rd homer of the season — and 3rd homer of the week. He went 1-3 on the night, with a walk, to increase his batting average to .188.
4. Bullpen Brilliant As Usual
Michael King relieved Cortes in the 5th and pitched 3 shutout innings — as usual. He lowered his ERA to 0.51.
Michael King wants the crown this season 👑
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) May 5, 2022
Clay Holmes pitched a shutout 9th.
Yankee bullpen = 4 shutout innings. As usual.
5. Boone Tossed
Aaron Judge was called out on strikes in the 6th — the last pitch was recorded below his knees. When Judge came up in the 8th, manager Aaron Boone was already in a state of pissed off — and when Judge got an inside low and then an outside low pitch called for strikes against him, Boone let ump Marty Foster know he was screwing up, and got tossed.
Boone wants the ump to make an adjustment, a breakdown pic.twitter.com/hVHyM0ffP5
— Jomboy (@Jomboy_) May 5, 2022
In the 9th:
- Giancarlo Stanton got a 1-out single in the 9th against Toronto ace reliever Jordan Romano, and Tim Locastro ran for him, representing the tying run.
- Josh Donaldson singled to make it 1st and 2nd, 1 out — but
- Aaron Hicks struck out.
- Joey Gallo walked to load the bases with 2 outs, but
- Kiner-Falefa hit the game-ending groundout that he “just missed” beating out.