This four-game series between the New York Yankees and the Houston Astros has seen a little bit of everything. A dominant performance by Dallas Keuchel on Thursday night led the Astros to a 4-0 victory. Two native Houstonians (Chris Young and Nathan Eovaldi) led the Yankees to a win in game two 3-2. Game three saw six home runs between the two sides and a late inning double by Mark Teixeira pushed New York to a win.
Game four saw a match-up of eight game winners in Michael Pineda for the Yankees and Collin McHugh for Houston. The billing lived up to the hype as both starters pitched eight innings in a pitcher’s duel. The Yankees cracked the scoreboard in the third as Stephen Drew walked with one out and took second on a wild pitch. Brett Gardner, who came into the at-bat hitting .500 in his last 42 ab’s, hit a single up the middle to score Drew from second. That was the only run New York could muster as McHugh only gave up two hits with eight strikeouts in the victory.
After the Game A.J. Hinch spoke about his starter, “He was fantastic. He was as dominant as we could ask him to be. He had every pitch working, had command, high cutter, his fastball, his breaking pitch early was good. All really good signs for him and it’s something that is a great boost to our team and a tremendous pitching performance.”
The Astros would tie the game at 1-1 in the fourth however as rookie Carlos Correa was the beneficiary of miscommunication between New York center fielder Gardner and left fielder Garrett Jones. The ball landed perfectly between the two outfielders, both of which were calling for the ball, for a double but skirted away from Gardner who bobbled it allowing Correa to come all the way around to score. The official scoring of the play is a double with an error on Gardner that allowed the run to come across.
Correa scored again in the seventh after he led off the inning with a double to left-center and was SAC bunted to third by Jose Altuve. Evan Gattis followed the bunt with a triple into the left center field gap to score the Astros second run of the ball game and the first lead of the game at 2-1. The Astros scored again in the eighth when a SAC fly from Jason Castro scored Preston Tucker from third which gave the game it’s final run and the Astros the ultimate lead at 3-1. Luke Gregerson came on to close the game out in the ninth for his 18th save of the year.
Sunday marked Michael Pineda’s first ever complete game as he gave up three runs (two earned) on seven hits. Hinch spoke praise of the Yankees’ start after the game, “Pineda was tough today. He had really good stuff and didn’t give us hardly anything early. We were fortunate to get the miscommunication in the outfield…but we had to scratch and claw everything.”
The win splits the four game set between the two sides after Houston won game one of the weekend and New York winning the middle two games. The Yankees continue their road trip against the AL West with a three game set in Anaheim against the Angels on the Horizon. For Houston, the homestand will continue as the Astros welcome in the AL Central leading Kansas City Royals for three games.
WP: Collin McHugh (9-3)
LP: Michael Pineda (8-5)
SAVE: Luke Gregerson (18)