For Green, different opponent, different result
Chad Green made an important discovery Friday night that the Cleveland Indians are not the San Diego Padres. It did not take long, either. The first two Tribe batters, designated hitter Carlos Santana and second baseman Jason Kipnis, took Green deep, and the righthander only got in deeper after that.
Two more home runs were on the way. Before the first inning was over, Lonnie Chisenhall had added a two-run bomb to right that made the score 4-0, and it was all downhill for the Yanks from that point on as they fell, 10-2.
Just last Sunday, Green had impressed the Yankees with six forceful innings (three hits, one run, no walks, eight strikeouts) to the degree that they added him to the rotation and sent Nathan Eovaldi to the bullpen. Green’s first major-league victory came against the Padres, who reside in the basement of the National League West. Friday night, Green was up against the Indians, who reside in the penthouse of the American League Central.
Green settled down somewhat in the second inning in retiring the side in order with two strikeouts. But he could not keep the ball in the yard in the third and yielded his fourth homer of the game, a two-run shot to left-center by Mike Napoli that dug the Yankees into a 6-0 ditch.
That is not the score you want to try to erase against the likes of a Corey Kluber, the 2014 AL Cy Young Award winner who Iooked very much like the pitcher he was that season. The righthander pitched eight innings and other than a solo home run to Brian McCann allowed four other hits and no walks with eight strikeouts.
Two of those hits off Kluber were a double and a single by red-hot Didi Gregorius, who lifted his season batting average to .300. The Yankees got their second run in the ninth off Joseph Colon in his big-league debut on doubles by Carlos Beltran and McCann. The Indians made it a five-homer night when Kipnis connected again, off Anthony Swarzak in the seventh, for his second home run of the game and third of the series.
The euphoria that ran through the clubhouse after Thursday night’s victory dissipated with another distressing loss that kept the Yankees’ record below .500 (42-44), which means they will not finish above par before the All-Star break.