Carlos Rodon — who had pitched well his last 3 starts — was NUCLEAR BOMBED — allowing 5 runs and getting YANKED with the bases loaded and nobody out in the 1st inning. All runners came around to score — his line: 8 runs in 0 innings.
He never got an out.
Not just bombed. NUCLEAR BOMBED.
It was one of the worst starting pitching performances of all time.
Matt Bowman came in with gasoline — allowing all 3 inherited runners to score and allowing another of his own to come around to make it 9-0 KC in the 1st inning.
The Yankees battled back — a 3-run homer by Austin Wells started their comeback and they pulled to within 10-5 by the 6th, but a 2-run homer by Bobby Witt in the 7th killed their faint hopes.
“Yea rough,” said Boone afterwards. “A tick down in stuff. Just didn’t have the life on his fastball, and then location — just in the heart of the plate a lot, even with his secondary stuff. And obviously a tough way for him to end. In the middle of the inning, I thought — boom he started to pop a couple, the profile on it looked all right — but then right back to him making a couple of mistakes with the secondary stuff. Obviously a lot to work on this winter.”
“There’s no doubt in the talent,” continued Boone. “We’ve seen enough this year to know we can get that out — but obviously we have to have a good winter with him and come ready to go in spring training and hopefully have this year be one of those things that throws a log on the fire and motivates you. The one thing again that he has going for him is he has ability and he has the stuff.”
NY falls to 81-79. They need a win in their last 2 games to finish over .500 for the 31st straight year. KC falls to 55-105.
1. Rodon NuKed
Carlos Rodon is going to have to think about this start all winter. Yankee fans are going to have to think about this start all winter. Yankee management too.
Rodon had been looking so good in his last few starts — it gave you the idea that he would join Gerrit Cole and hopefully Nestor Cortes and maybe Michael King at the top of the rotation next year. He looked like a Bulldog.
And now this.
Single, walk, double, homerun by Edward Olivares and it was 4-0 KC, nobody out. Then came single, single, single, walk and Rodon was gone — bases loaded nobody out, KC 5 NY 0.
In between all that, Rodon even turned his back on pitching coach Matt Blake when he came out to talk to Rodon. Rodon apologized for it later.
“It wasn’t great. Definitely not the best move,” said Rodon afterwards about turning his back on Blake. “It shouldn’t happen. Like I said I was frustrated with myself and my performance. Really embarrassing. And then doing that with Matt, coming out trying to help me, I turned my back I was just not in the right mind that’s for sure. That’s on me.”
In came Matt Bowman: double (for 2 runs), single (for a run), sac fly — the first out of the game! KC 9 Yanks 0.
“Yea I was just pulling the ball down the middle, just didn’t find my lane, and they hit the ball,” said Rodon afterwards. “I don’t know. I tried to step on it a little bit; I was getting a little angry; just trying to compete. I wish I had the secondary; I probably needed to go to that sooner — but that wasn’t falling in the strike zone either. Nothing was really working. I felt fine; I didn’t think I’d have the velocity down, but it was. I just got beat.”
2. Wells 3-Run Bomb Pulls NY to Within 10-3
Good news — Austin Wells continues to look real good.
3. Pereira & Wells Get the Job Done for Runs
The Yanks chipped away with another run in the 5th: leadoff double by Oswald Peraza, bunt by Oswald Cabrera to move the runner to 3rd, and a groundout by Everson Pereira to score the run. Beautiful and nice job Pereira doing his job in plating that run.
The Yanks chipped away with another run in the 6th: leadoff double by Aaron Judge that hit at the base of the wall in left center (looked like a homer off the bat but KC has a big park), and then Judge took 3rd on a wild pitch. Gleyber Torres lined out but Austin Wells did his job — hitting an 0-2 pitch on the ground toward 1st for an out but the run scored.
Austin Wells continues to make contact and hit for power. He continues to look real good.
4. Vasquez Pitches Well
More good news for the future: Randy Vasquez came in and pitched well again: 3.2 innings, 1 run, struck out 6. He has a live fastball and athletic delivery.
Vasquez got in trouble in his 3rd inning of pitching — the 6th — when with 2 outs, a single and walk loaded the bases. But Zach McAllister came in to strike out Logan Porter in an 8-pitch at bat. Huge as it left the bases loaded and kept the Yanks with their faint hope of a comeback.
5. Middleton Rusty
Keynan Middleton was back from the IL where he’d been the last few weeks and looked rusty. He allowed a 2-run homer to Bobby Witt in the 7th that pretty much ended any Yankee hopes of a miracle comeback.
The Yanks had a mini rally in the 9th — Anthony Volpe led off against Jonathan Bowlan with an infield single and Jake Bauers followed with a single to put 1st and 2nd, nobody out. But Bowlan got foul out, fly out, strike out for the old ballgame.