Rizzo Blows Game with Error in 8th. LA Angels 4 NY 3

The Yankees had this game — a 3-2 lead in the 8th with Luke Weaver pitching well as the setup man — when with 2 outs and a runner on 1st Weaver got Luis Rengifo to ground the ball to 1st for what should have been the end of the inning.

But Anthony Rizzo muffed tbe grounder, and the inning was extended. Clay Holmes came in and allowed a 2-RBI double by Taylor Ward and LA took the lead 4-3, and eventually the ballgame as NY went out 1-2-3 in the 9th. On a Tuesday night in Anaheim.

“He had some hick-ups there early, real early,” said manager Aaron Boone about Rizzo’s defense this season. “And since then has kind of gotten clean and what we’re used to with Rizz, A couple mistakes here and there but it’s on top of the early (part of the season) where he made a few mistakes. A little uncharacteristic there, but part of it. We always talk about offense going through it; sometimes even the best go through it a little bit, a mistake here and there, on defense. It can be challenging. He’s still great over there. Just a couple of hick-ups lately.”

The Yankee loss did not get credit as a sacrifice to the Gods of Hockey, as the NY Rangers lost their playoff game to Florida on an OT goal shortly after the Rizzo error — tying that series 2-2.

NY drops to 37-19 and are now 1.5 games ahead of Baltimore for the AL East lead. LA improves to 21-33.

1. Soto HR Starts the Scoring

Juan Soto started the scoring with a solo homerun in the top of the 1st against Griffin Canning, the LA Angels’ 28-year-old, 6’2 righty.

2. Cortes Good

Nestor Cortes gave back the lead right away in the bottom of the 1st, allowing a 1-out single to Rengifo and a 2-out, 368-foot HR to Kevin Pillar.

Rengifo went 3-4 on the evening; he is batting .338 on the year after batting .264 in each of the last 2 years as LA’s regular 2nd baseman.

After that Cortes settled down. Cortes:

  • Allowed a 1-out single to Zach Neto in the 2nd, but picked him off 1st base,
  • Pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the 3rd,
  • Pitched around a 1-out single in the 4th, getting the final 2 batters,
  • Pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the 5th, and
  • Allowed a 1-out single to Rengifo in the 6th and was relieved by Tommy Kahnle.

Kahnle got the final 2 outs of the 6th on groundouts.

Cortes left with a 3-2 lead — his line: 5 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 5 K, 0 BB. He does not get a decision, so is 3-4 3.30.

The outing by Cortes gave Yankee starters 15 straight games throwing at least 5 innings allowing 2 runs or less, which set a new MLB record. The previous mark of 14 games was shared by the 1907 Phillies, the 1968 Pirates, and the 2022 Mets.

3. Soto RBI Single Ties It 2-2

The Yankees pressured Canning with 2 singles in the 2nd — the later one coming with 2 outs by Anthony Volpe which extended his hitting streak to 20 consecutive games.

The Yanks tied the game in the 4th on a 2-out walk by DJ LeMahieu — his first at bat of the season — an infield single by Volpe, and a clutch RBI single to opposite field left by Juan Soto.

4. Wells RBI Double Gives Yanks 3-2 Lead

The Yanks took the lead off Canning in the 5th — Giancarlo Struck out but reached 1st on a wild pitch by Canning. With 2 outs, Gleyber Torres walked, and Austin Wells rocked a double to right center. NY 3 LA 2.

5. Weaver Great

Luke Weaver came on to pitch a 1-2-3 inning in the 7th, and was cruising in the 8th after allowing a leadoff single to old friend Willie Calhoun, got a lineout, strikeout, and then the grounder to 1st by Rengifo to end the inning. Not.


6. Rizzo Muffs It

The Rizzo error on Rengifo’s grounder that extended the 8th inning seemed like Rizzo’s 8th or 9th error of the year — but it was only his 3rd and he has a .992 fielding percentage, 6th in the American League. But he’s been muffing a lot of plays that he hasn’t drawn an error on — failing to pick balls on a bounce to 1st and muffing other plays.

After Rizzo muffed the grounder, Boone brought in Clay Holmes who allowed the go-ahead double by Ward — causing many Yankee fans on Twitter to exasperate why he didn’t leave Weaver in, as Weaver was cruising.

NY went out 1-2-3 against LA’s ace reliever Carlos Estevez in the 9th for the old ballgame.

The Boxscore


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