It was a pitcher’s duel early on in the Bronx on Saturday afternoon with team aces Gerrit Cole and Kenta Maeda exchanging great performances from each dugout.
The New York Yankees got on the board first in the bottom of the second inning after a hit-by-pitch by Rougned Odor kicked off a rally for the Yankees, ending with a RBI single by Tyler Wade gave the New York Yankees an early 1-0 lead.
The Minnesota Twins had a great chance to get on the board themselves in the top of the 5th inning when they had the bases loaded and Josh Donaldson up to the plate, but Donaldson took a called third strike to end the Twins rally and preserve Cole’s outstanding outing.
Things took a turn for the worse for Maeda and the Minnesota Twins in the bottom of the 5th inning, though, when Maeda lost all control of his pitches. Maeda allowed a double and a single before hitting Anthony Rizzo, throwing a wild pitch, and walking Aaron Judge on nine consecutive balls. Following the walk to Judge and a ball to the next hitter, Maeda motioned for the trainers to come out and Maeda was promptly removed from the game with what was called right forearm tightness.
Responsible for all three runs on the bases after being removed from the game, Twins reliever Edgar Garcia allowed each of the runs to score on doubles from Giancarlo Stanton and Luke Voit to give the Yankees a five-run inning and push their lead to 6-0.
On the day, Maeda pitched 4 1/3 innings and allowed five earned runs on four hits, one walk and two hit batters.
Across the diamond, Gerrit Cole was much more effective for the New York Yankees, limiting the Twins to just five hits across scoreless innings while striking out six.
While the rest of the Twins’ offense struggled to push runs across the plate, Jorge Polanco stayed on his ridiculous hot streak at the plate, blasting a solo home run to left field in the bottom of the 8th to give the Twins their first (and only) run of the game.
The Yankees sure didn’t need any insurance runs, but they got another one in the bottom of the 8th inning on a solo shot from backup shortstop, Andrew Velazquez.
The Twins would wind up losing to the New York Yankees 7-1, making it three losses in a row and cementing yet another series loss to the Bronx Bombers.
The Twins will look to avoid a 4-game sweep tomorrow afternoon when they send Griffin Jax to the mound to face off against old friend Luis Gil.
Editor’s note: It has since been announced that Sunday’s game has been rained out.
Bullpen Usage Chart