Well, they split the series, but they didn’t give it up easily, forcing extra innings. Nathan Eovaldi was actually matched against the Nationals’ starter pretty well. Nasty Nate threw 97 pitches into the 8th inning, giving up 8 hits, 3 runs, a walk, and 4 strikeouts. He gave up back-to-back 2-out doubles in the 3rd for the first Washington run and a big 2-out solo home run in the 5th to give the Nats a decent 2-0 lead at the regular halfway point in the game (middle of the 5th inning).
The Yankees found their own offense in that 7th inning once again. Young led-off with a single and then scored on Brendan Ryan’s big triple. That knocked the Nats starter out of the game, which proved good for the Yankees. Brett Gardner hit a nice double that easily scored Ryan and tied up the game. And despite 2 outs, Washington went for yet another pitching change. Didn’t help. Alex Rodriguez hit his own double that score Gardner so the Yankees could take the lead. Gardner would later score on Brian McCann’s accidental single to put the Yankees up over the Nats 4-2.
That lovely lead didn’t last long. In the 8th, Eovaldi gave up his last hit, a single, and then got a standing ovation as he exited the game and handed the ball over the young reliever Jacob Lindgren. That runner initially got out on a force out, but that batter quickly scored on a big 2-run home run to tie the game once again. Justin Wilson maintained the tie in the 19-pitch 9th inning, forcing the game into extra innings. And Chris Capuano did the same through the 10th. But it was the his 11th inning that caused some trouble — a lead-off single, moved to 2nd on a sacrifice bunt, then 3rd on a ground out, and then scored on a single that got to 1st just a hair too late to allow the run to score and pushed the Nationals up over the Yankees.
The Yankees just weren’t able to compile a run in the bottom of the 11th and surrendered the game to the Nationals.
Final score from the Bronx: 5-4 Nationals, in 11 innings. Yankees and Nationals split this series 1-1.
Before today’s game, the Yankees activated Brendan Ryan from the 60-day DL, which was a great idea as Ryan (sporting a questionable mustache and all) was a crucial key to both the Yankees offense and defense. Ramon Flores was optioned to AAA as the corresponding roster move, and he was joined by Jose Pirela following the game today.
Injury updates: Ivan Nova is still on rehab assignment in Florida and doing well to work his way back. Jacoby Ellsbury worked out at Yankee Stadium this morning, testing out his knee strength; he will travel with the team on their upcoming road trip to continue those kinds of workouts before heading to Florida next week to spend time at the Minor League complex for future rehab workouts that will lead to his rehab assignment that will lead to being back in the Bronx.
And the big question during the game was “where were the Dynamic Duo?”. Simple answer — Betances was on rest so as not to overuse him, and Andrew Miller will be on his way to the DL with a strained forearm muscle (a common injury from overuse). No major worries — just rest for Miller and Betances will become the closer in save situations until further notice.
And for the final day of the draft, here are the list of players selected by the Yankees in rounds 11-40: Joshua Rogers, Terrance Robertson, Trey Amburgey, Will Carter, Bret Marks, Kolton Mahoney, Brody Koerner, Zack Zehner, Mark Seyler, Isiah Gilliam, Joshua Roeder, Cody Carrol, Garrett Mundell, Patrick O’Brien, Austin Afenir, Icezack Flemming, Michael Hicks, David Sosebee, Kane Sweeney, Chad Martin, Hobie Harris, Alexander Robinett, Christian Morris, Andrew Miller (the one in a New Jersey high school), Alex Bisacca, Dustin Cook, Matthew Schmidt, Mike Garzillo, Deacon Liput, and Will Albertson
The draftees now are to make a decision to sign or decline the offer. The young players range in ages from 18-22, some graduating high school this year, some graduating college. So they will now have to decide whether a pro-ball career is worth the shot now or choose education and college ball for now, taking a shot at the draft next year (or in 4 years). When the final list is posted for those who sign with the Yankees, I will post the new Baby Bombers on here. Stay tuned.