Nestor Cortes Great But Yanks Can’t Score. Tampa 2 NY 0 in 10

Nestor Cortes pitched 7 shutout innings, allowing 6 hits, striking out 9 and walking nobody — a tremendous start. That was the good news.

The bad news is that the Yankees never scored, losing 2-0 in 10 innings as Ben Rortvedt put the game away by singling in the 2nd run.

And Aaron Judge went 0-4 with 4 strikeouts on his Bobblehead day.

On a Sunny, nice Saturday afternoon at Yankee Stadium — the game played after a tribute to John Sterling that was hastily arranged by NY this week after the sudden announcement of Sterling’s retirement, effective immediately.

“Eflin threw well,” said manager Aaron Boone afterwards. “He’s got prescense on both sides of the plate, and moves his fastball with his sinker and his cutter both ways, and then can slow you down with the breaking ball, and he had it going today.”

NY drops to 14-7. Tampa improves to 12-10.

1. Cortes Great

The good news was Nestor Cortes, who was On His Game — getting ahead in counts and gettnig lots of swings and misses. He looked like he was tiring in the 6th, but got a Huge ground out of Amed Rosario to end the inning with runners on 1st and 2nd.

But he motored through the 7th to finish with the 7 shutout innings, improving his slash line to 1-1 3.41.

“Good to see Nestor — man — even in that 7th inning I thought he was tired, and still was able to execute,” said Boone afterwards. “I thought he threw really well.”

2. Eflin Shuts Down NY

Nestor actually out-dueled Zach Eflin in that he out-lasted him. But Eflin was lights out — 6 shutout innings, allowing 3 hits and 0 walks.

After 7 years in Philly as a back-of-the-rotation starter, Eflin went to Tampa last year and like many before him, ignited his career — leading the AL in wins with a 16-8 3.50 record.

3. Judge 0-4 with 4 K’s On His Bobblehead Day

Aaron Judge struck out all 4 times he came up, on an afternoon where the Yankees gave out an Aaron Judge bobblehead doll.

The bobblehead was immediately selling for $150 on ebay.

4. Rizzo “Just Missed” in the 9th

Luke Weaver followed Cortes with a shutout 8th and Clay Holmes pitched a shutout 9th.

In the bottom of the 9th, Anthony Rizzo — who had singled earlier to get one of only 4 Yankee hits — hit a 3-0 fastball from reliever Jason Adam HIGH into the SKY in right — caught on the warning track. He “Just Missed” getting it all for a game winning homer. But not.

5. Tampa Scores 2 in 10th; Yanks Don’t

Caleb Ferguson pitched the 10th for NY, and allowed a leadoff single to Jose Caballero that scored inherited runner Palacios to put Tampa up 1-0. Caleb got a strikeout, but old friend Ben Rortvedt singled in Caballero to put Tampa up 2-0.

In the bottom of the 10th, Tampa’s Garrett Cleavinger retired the Yanks in order for the old ballgame ground out, ground out to 3rd by pinch hitter Gleyber Torres, and strikeout of Oswaldo Cabrera for the old ballgame.

6. Lively Ball = Lotsa Strikeouts; Low Batting Averages

PS: the ball is lively. And they put a new ball in play constantly. Pitchers are dominating because the ball MOVES. Pitching Ninja has become a cottage industry. Plus there is computer-aided positioning. But hit the ball and it could go. Homeruns are up. Batting averages are way down.

7. Except for Soto

Except for Juan Soto, who went 2-4 in the game with a single and ground rule double. He’s batting .354.


The Yanks announced John Sterling’s retirement earlier in the week, “effective immediately“, and then announced there would be a retirement ceremony before this game. The Sterling retirement ceremonies before the game became even odder when Boone and Gleyber carried out a big screen television set as one of the gifts to Sterling.

Even former Yankee Phil Hughes thought the television gift odd.

It seemed a last-second Best Buy gift for a last-second retirement. We tweeted this and got a lot of agreement.

NY didn’t have time to create a plaque for Sterling in Monument Park or anything.

The Boxscore


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