Relievers combined for 4.2 scoreless innings in the Yankees' 4-3 win over the Texas Rangers on Monday.
Here are the takeaways...
1. With the Yankees leading, 4-0, Charlie Culberson got Texas on the board with a leadoff homer in the fifth, and then Leody Taveras and Isiah Kiner-Falefa had back-to-back doubles to cut the deficit to 4-2. Nestor Cortes, Jr. exited with one out in the inning, and Aaron Boone brought in Chad Green. Green threw a wild pitch and then allowed a sac fly to make it 4-3, but he retired all five batters he faced – a strong performance after three straight outings where he allowed a home run to give the opposition the lead.
2. Cortes allowed back-to-back singles to kick the game off. A wild pitch (that should have been caught by Gary Sanchez) advanced the runners, but he took matters into his own hands and struck out the next three Rangers to get out of the jam. He allowed no hits and just two walks in his next three innings.
He finished his night giving up three runs on five hits while walking two and striking out seven in 4.1 frames.
3. Sanchez put the Yanks on the board with a solo home run in the second inning, his 22nd of the year. The Yankees had three straight singles in the third – the last by Aaron Judge that drove in DJ LeMahieu to make it a 2-0 game. Giancarlo Stanton followed up with a sacrifice fly to increase the lead to 3-0, and two batters later, Gleyber Torres drove in Judge.
4. Clay Holmes took on the seventh inning, and went three up, three down. In the eighth, he allowed a leadoff single, but did record two outs. Joely Rodriguez entered, and put the lead run on base with an infield hit, but struck out Nick Solak to end the inning and hold the lead.
5. The ninth was Aroldis Chapman's, as he faced the bottom of the Rangers' order. He retired them in order for his fifth straight scoreless outing and 28th save.
6. Paired with the Toronto Blue Jays' loss to the Tampa Bay Rays, the Yankees now trail Toronto by a half game for the second Wild Card spot.
The Yankees continue their series with Texas on Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. in the Bronx.
Jordan Montgomery will take the mound for the Yanks, while the Rangers will go with Dane Dunning.