Yanks’ bats atone for early mistakes
When a team is struggling offensively as the Yankees have throughout this homestand it can afford precious few mistakes. The Yankees were guilty on that count Friday night and lost the chance to pin David Price on the ropes.
The Yankees had to wait until Price was out of the game to blast their way back into it. Back-to-back home runs by Mark Teixeira (No. 4) and Alfonso Soriano (No. 5) in the eighth inning off righthander Joel Peralta made it a new ballgame and rejuvenated a relatively stagnant Yanks offense.
Vidal Nuno, who has replaced Ivan Nova (Tommy John surgery on his right shoulder) in the rotation, hurt himself with a wild pitch in the second inning that allowed Sean Rodriguez, who had doubled with one out, to cross to third base. It permitted Rodriguez to score on an infield single by James Loney. Yankees left fielder Alfonso Soriano contributed to that run since he made a circular track of Rodriguez’s liner to left-center for that double.
After the Yankees went ahead, 2-1, in the second on Brian McCann’s two-run home run off Price, his second in six career at-bats against the lefthander, Nuno let the Rays regain the lead with his own wildness that compounded another defensive lapse.
Jacoby Ellsbury, who has played a splendid center field in his first year with the Yankees, lost Evan Longoria’s drive to right-center in the lights that should have been the second out of the inning but instead became a triple. Wil Myers tied the score moments later with a single to left.
Nuno walked the next two batters, which loaded the bases, and the Rays made it 3-2 on a sacrifice fly by .154-batting Logan Forsythe. Nuno failed to get through the fifth as Desmond Jennings drove an 0-1 pitch to the opposite field for his third home run of the season.
Price, who has been battered a bit in the early going (4.75 ERA entering play), settled down once the Rays were back on top. The 2012 American League Cy Young Award winner, pitched scoreless ball after the McCann home run through the seventh with eight strikeouts. The Yankees were very happy to see him out of the game at that point.