Yankees GBU – London Calling
Well it wasn’t exactly the series the Yankees wanted it to be, but they came away with two huge wins against their rival Boston Red Sox in London. The London Series was a success (I guess) and both teams had plenty of offense to go around. The main difference was the Yankees just scored more runs. 29 runs in two games, regardless of where the games took place, is nothing to scoff at.
Lots of runs to go around
As previously mentioned, the Yankees scored a lot of runs. 29 to be exact. They got it in every way possible, both through long rallies and home runs. They kept the home run streak alive at 31 and even without the home runs they would have been successful.
Every starter not named Gary Sanchez had a hit in game one, and every starter not named Edwin Encarnacion had a hit in game two. Aaron Hicks had the first MLB home run ever in Europe, and Aaron Judge followed it up with a home run of his own. In game two, Didi Gregorius was the lone Yankee to homer in the game.
D.J. Lemahieu continues to thrive
You thought at the beginning of game two that D.J. Lemahieu’s hitting streak would end at 13, and you would be wrong. Lemahieu turned an 0-for-2 start into a three hit, two RBI game. Lemahieu also had four hits and five RBIs in game one.
Lemahieu is everything the Yankees asked for and more. People were concerned with where he would play at the beginning of the season but the combination of the injuries to the Yankees and his unbelievable season has made him untouchable in the lineup.
DJL is not only the Yankee’s MVP, he’s starting to make a case for MVP of the entire American League. Lemahieu is currently batting .345 with 12 home runs and 61 RBIs. He received good news over the weekend as he was selected as a starter on the American League All-Star team. It’s an honor well deserved and Lemahieu, along with Aroldis Chapman and Gary Sanchez, will be great representatives of the Yankees.
Green is lights out, Cessa keeping his spot
The final good thing to come out of a wild two game series was the emergence of Chad Green as an elite bullpen arm again, and Luis Cessa as (possibly) a viable option going forward in the bullpen. It’s been said many times that Cessa deserved to go down to AAA, but he redeemed himself with a clean four innings in game two, a rarity in a series that had much more offense than defense.
Green went two innings of four hit ball after Masahiro Tanaka was knocked out of the game after less than an inning of work. Green held the Red Sox at bay after the Yankees relinquished a 6-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Green wasn’t dominant but kept the Red Sox off the scoresheet.
Cessa was a nice surprise in game two considering the Yankees went down early 4-0. He kept the Red Sox off the scoresheet also and had a great comeback effort after becoming the whipping boy of Yankee fans over the past month. This doesn’t mean that he won’t falter again, but he came out on top in London.
Not a good weekend to be a starter
Both Rick Porcello and Masahiro Tanaka didn’t make it out of the first inning in game one of the London Series. Tanaka gave up four hits and six runs in 2/3 of an inning and didn’t look like his sharp self in an abbreviated outing. It may be due to the mound, as most pitchers were leaving everything high in the strike zone, or it could be a combination of things. Either way, not a great start by Tanaka.
Stephen Tarpley had the pleasure of starting game two and he was almost as bad as Tanaka. Tarpley got through the first inning, but gave up four runs on four hits, including three home runs. London Stadium was a launching pad all day and Tarpley got the brunt of it.
Luke Voit exits with oblique injury
Luke Voit had four hits in game one against the Red Sox but left the game with what he claims is an oblique injury. Voit was hustling for a double on his fourth hit when he came up limping rounding first base. He luckily made it to second and walked off under his own power, but it’s never a good sign when one of your top sluggers comes up limping.
Voit should have been an All-Star this season, slashing .280 with 17 home runs, 53 RBIs and an OBP of .393. To put it lightly, he was screwed out of it. It may have been a blessing in disguise though because now he gets to rest right before the All-Star Break.
It doesn’t look like it’s a serious injury considering Aaron Boone said he may be available to pinch hit in game two, but it’s good to rest Voit for now, move D.J. Lemahieu to first base and bring in Gio Urshela to play third base for a few weeks. With the Yankee depth it isn’t a huge deal but Voit will be a loss in the middle of that potent Yankee lineup.
There will be a separate article on how the London Series panned out for the Yankees and baseball in general, but at the end of the day it’s two games in the win column. It’s also two wins that push the Red Sox further back in the American League East. Overall, it was a solid business trip for the Yankees and they should be proud to not only be the first team to play a baseball game in London, but the first to sweep a series as well.
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