Three cities and nine games later, the New York Yankees end their road trip 5-4.
Starting out the road trip in Kansas City, the Yankees lost two out of three games. Then a confidence-boosting sweep in Seattle against the Mariners left the team with hopeful optimism.
Then the Yankees continued its four game winning streak, taking the first game against the Oakland Athletics, 7-0. It was a surprising and much needed win for the Yankees, as the Athletics are currently number one in its division.
David Phelps pitched a dominant six innings on Friday night, only allowing the Athletics two hits. This came as a surprise performance since Phelps had previously lost four straight starts and procured a 6.57 ERA during that time. His performance during this game seemed like a fluke, but let’s not question it.
The confidence of the Yankees slowly diminished as Saturday and Sunday’s games both ended with a bitter loss.
Saturday night’s game wasn’t too bad, just a bit hectic what with a 38 minute delay in the fourth inning due to a malfunction to the outfield lights in the stadium. The Yankees starting pitcher, Hiroki Kuroda, looked a bit off before and after the delay and was taken out during the fifth. Then 30 minutes before the game, Mark Teixeira was scratched from the lineup due to a back spasm and Brian McCann once again took his place at first base. With the distractions surrounding this game, the Yankees lost 5-1.
Sunday’s game was the real heartbreaker. The Yankees lost 10-5 with a below average performance from SP Vidal Nuno. He lost for the first time in his seven road starts. During this game he allowed eight runs in three innings… ouch. Two of those included a pair of three- run home runs by Athletics’ Derek Norris and CoCo Crisp.
Nuno’s relief, Jose Ramirez, was just as ineffective. He even clunked Athletics’ Craig Gentry in the helmet with a breaking ball to force in a run.
Then there was Carlos Beltran. He was doing so well… but made an embarrassing play in the eighth inning by mistakenly thinking there were already two outs instead of one.
After hitting a line drive that got McCann out, Beltran jogged toward the first base dugout, which the umpire ruled as an out for abandoning the base. It was an honest mistake; embarrassing, yes, but it happens. And lucky for him, the Yankees were already down 10-3, and that point so it wasn’t so much a costly mistake as it was embarrassing. Regardless, he still had a solid game, hitting the ball each time he got on plate.
“I think if you were to say before you start a road trip that you’re going to go to the West Coast and you’re going to end up with a positive road trip, you’d say, ‘All right,’” manager Joe Girardi said. “But when we were 5-2 and had a chance to have a really good road trip, it kind of stings a little bit.”