Game 64: NYY vs. COL — Rocky start, comeback falls flat

Let me just say that there are some games that are just painful to watch. For some people, it’s when their team is getting just hammered by the opposition. For me, it’s when both teams just play awful. And it’s when a game can feel longer than, say, 3 hours and 43 minutes.

The Yankees are in the Mile High City for a quick 2-game series against the Rockies. And tonight’s game was anything but predictable or, well, good. Can I blame the elevation? I get altitude sickness, so can I use that excuse? I guess that wouldn’t explain much.

Nathan Eovaldi go the start tonight but was anything but his normal “NastyNate”-style. Into the 5th inning, Eovaldi threw 79 pitches, gave up 8 hits, 2 walks, and 6 runs, striking out just 2 Colorado batters. In the 2nd, a lead-off double scored on a 2-out double to kick-start a big night for the Rockies.

A single led-off the messy 4th inning for the Rockies, followed quickly by a 2-run home run and a solo home run to push the Rockies very safely into the lead. A walk was quickly erased by the quick moves of McCann’s “mccannon” arm to catch him at 2nd before Eovaldi got out of the inning relying on his best weapon tonight — his defense behind him.

Eovaldi came back out for the 5th and just couldn’t find an out, instead giving up a single, a stolen base, an RBI single, a wild pitch, and an RBI double. And it was onto Nick Goody to stop the bad night for the starter, who closed out the inning without further damage.

The Yankees, behind 6-0 at this point in the game, went into the 6th inning and started to wage their comeback. With 1 out, McCann worked a walk and moved to 2nd on Headley’s successful bunt single, and a wild pitch moved them to scoring position. They wouldn’t really need it as Didi Gregorius got the Yankees on the board with a 2-out 3-run home run into the right field seats to slice the Rockies lead in half.

But that didn’t last long. Kirby Yates came to mound in the bottom half of the inning and had his own version of a rough time. A walk and a 1-out single put runners on the corners, and a messy pick-off attempt scored one runner and moved the other all the way to 3rd. After a 2-out walk, the Yankees felt that maybe a new reliever might be best. Unfortunately, it wasn’t so much. Richard Bleier continued the momentum with his own rough outing to close out the inning with consecutive RBI singles to further expand the Rockies lead.

Bleier continued through the 7th and didn’t exactly come out any cleaner. Before even getting an out, he gave up a single, a double, and a 2-RBI triple. A sacrifice fly scored the other runner of the inning.

Down 12-3, the Yankees went into the 8th inning with hopes of a major comeback. And comeback they did. With 1 out, they loaded with bases with consecutive singles and just started scoring runs. First, recently signed Ike Davis singled home Refsnyder, then Jacoby Ellsbury’s single scored Gregorius and Hicks. The Rockies brought in pitcher #2 in this inning (#5 in the game), who promptly plunked Gardner to load the bases again. Starlin Castro’s single scored Davis and Ellsbury before the runners moved to scoring position on a throwing error. Brian McCann’s ground out scored Gardner, and Chase Headley’s single scored Castro to cap off the Yankees’ 7-run 8th inning.

And just like that, he Yankees were within striking distance. Andrew Miller gave up a solo home run to kick-off the bottom of the 8th inning, but it wasn’t enough of a lead for the Yankees to lose hope. Especially as Miller closed out the inning with 3 perfect strikeouts. But the Yankees stood no chance against the Rockies’ closer who shut them down in 10 pitches to have the Rockies tonight’s game.

Final score: 13-10 Rockies.

Look, I’ve said it before, when you get a high scoring game, something fell apart in your pitching somewhere. And this was true enough tonight on both sides of the diamond. 30 total hits, 23 runs scores, 8 walks, and 12 strike outs. Again, this aren’t exactly numbers to brag about for either team. It’s just that the Rockies spread their run-scoring out and thus had more chances to made a jump ahead early and stay there.

One more game tomorrow afternoon. More unpredictability? Probably.

Go Yankees!

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