Jhony Brito Brilliant. Judge, Stanton, Higgy HR. Yanks 6 SF Giants 0

The Yankees seem Stacked for 2023 — but if there is an air of worry it is injuries to the starting pitching staff. The Yanks come into the year with four (4) aces and Frankie Montas as the 5th starter. But Montas is already gone possibly for the year, and Carlos Rodon and Luis Severino start the year on the Injured List. You never have enough pitching.

Into this fray steps Jhony Brito — the Yanks #27 prospect coming into the season according to MLB — but a 6’2, 160-lb lanky, athletic right hander that went 6-2 3.31 in AAA Scranton last year and was 11-4 2.96 at all minor league levels (AA and AAA). He was so good that the Yankees put him on the 40-man roster in November to protect him from the Rule 5 draft.

On this sunny but brisk Sunday afternoon at the Stadium, Jhony Brito was Brilliant — 5 shutout innings, striking out 6 and allowing only 2 hits; walking 1.

He gained his first Major League win, as Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, and Kyle Higashioka hit homers and the Yankees coasted with the 6-0 win.

“Great experience out there,” said Brito after the game thru the Yankee translator. “I wasn’t nervous. I have to thank my teammates for preparing me and giving me good pointers to understand it’s the same kind of baseball we play up here, just a different stadium and definitely more fans — but I wasn’t nervous.” Brito said those players were Severino, German, and Cordero amongst others.

The Yanks take 2 of 3 from the San Francisco Giants to start the year — and are 2-1 in … 2nd place — as Tampa starts the year 3-0.

1. Brito Brilliant

How does MLB.com get it this wrong? Listing Brito as the #27 Yankee prospect puts him lower than 26 other players in the Yankee minor league system (sans Volpe who is now with the big club).

Brito used a 96-97 MPH four-seam fastball and an 88-MPH change up to dominate the Giants’ lineup. He threw in an 80-MPH curve and 95-MPH sinker. He threw strikes — got ahead in counts 0-2 — and put people away. He got guys to swing and miss for strike 3 on his changeup — and struck out the side in the 3rd inning.

In the 4th and 5th he got fly outs and ground outs, and left after 5 with a 4-0 lead.

2. Judge Homer Starts the Scoring

Aaron Judge, as usual, started off the scoring with a line-drive shot to left for Homer #2 on the season in the bottom of the 3rd off San Fran starter (and former Toronto Blue Jay) Ross Stripling.

3. Giancarlo Adds a 2-Run ROCKET SHOT

After Judge’s homer, Anthony Rizzo walked and Giancarlo Stanton hit a ROCKET over the “batter’s eye” in centerfield Yankee Stadium — the big black box that provides batters with a black background to pitches. Judge and Stanton bashing homers in the same inning to propel NY — just like the Yanks designed it back in December 2017.

4. Higgy Hits Homer Too

Kyle Higashioka hit a homer to left to lead off the 4th against Stripling and NY had a 4-0 lead.

5. Yanks Tack on 2 Runs in the 7th

Anthony Volpe led off the 7th with a walk off reliever Sean Hjelle, and moved to 2nd on a wild pitch. Gleyber Torres walked and Volpe and Torres executed a double steal with 1 out to put runners on 2nd and 3rd.

Anthony Rizzo plated Volpe with a sac fly, and Torres scored on another wild pitch by Hjelle and NY was up 6-0.

6. Marinaccio & the New Guys Shut ‘Em Down

Newcomer Jimmy Cordero pitched the 6th for NY. He allowed the first two runners on (infield single and hit by pitch) but then struck out 2, before being relieved by Ron Marinaccio who got the last batter and blew thru the 7th too — striking out the side.

NY brought in Colten Brewer — whom they had acquired from Tampa just 4 days ago — and he pitched as shutout 8th and 9th — getting all 3 batters he faced in the 9th to groundout for the old ballgame.

The Yankees could do no wrong on this day.

The Boxscore


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