GAME 59: That’s why they call ’em stoppers. Masahiro Tanaka pitched six strong innings, and the bullpen rediscovered its mojo as the Yankees ended their four game losing streak with a 2-1 win over Oakland.
Brett Gardner blasted a tie-breaking solo home run in the bottom of the third. Jacoby Ellsbury came within inches of a 2-run homer in the bottom of the first. The ball hit the very top of the right field wall and bounced back into play, but was called a home run by second base umpire Chris Guccione.
Challenged by A’s manager Bob Mevin, the call was overturned, and Ellsbury was returned to second base, with Derek Jeter on third. Mark Teixeira lined out and Carlos Beltran struck out to end the inning. It looked like the makings of another long day for the offense.
It actually was another long day for the bats, but this time the pitching covered for them. Tanaka allowed one earned run on a first inning homer by John Jaso, then scattered four hits over the next five innings. Dellin Betances did his thing, Adam Warren pitched in and out of trouble in the eighth, and David Robertson nailed it down.
“That’s what a true ace is. A true ace stops losing streaks. There’s not another guy we want out there after losing a few in a row than Tanaka.”
— Mark Teixeira
GAMEDAY NOTES: Scott Sizemore was DFA’d to make room for Carlos Beltran‘s return to the roster …
MEMORY LANE: On June 5th 1981, the Yankees defeated the Toronto Blue Jays 6-5 on a 10th inning walk-off sac-fly RBI by catcher Rick Cerone. The Bombers lineup that day included Lou Pinella, Reggie Jackson, Dave Winfield, Bobby Murcer, Graig Nettles and Bob Watson. Nettles and Sweet Lou homered. The Yankees, under manager Gene Michael, were in first place in the AL East with a 30-20 record…