On Tuesday night, the Yankees suffered a dismal loss when the Boston Red Sox defeated them 4-3 at Yankee Stadium. This lost ended the Yankees’ postseason, while the Sox advanced to the ALCS. As for the rest of the series, the Yankees simply underperformed.
Nearly everything that could have gone wrong for this team did. Ultimately, the pitching allowed too many runs and the offense could not score enough. Mediocre performances combined with a managing controversy created a storm that cut the Yankees’ postseason short.
Starters were one of the weakest elements of the Yankees’ entire postseason. J.A. Happ made the start in Game one, which quickly set the Yankees up for failure. His final line was highly uninspiring: 2.0 IP, 4 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 2 K. The five runs he allowed accounted for all of the Boston scoring that night, as they defeated the Yankees 5-4.
Masahiro Tanaka’s performance in Game two was the strongest start of the series: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K. Tanaka’s strong start earned him the only division series win and propelled the Yankees to a 6-2 victory at Fenway.
Luis Severino made the start in the disastrous Game three at home, quickly minimizing the Yankees’ chances of winning after putting up a line of: 3.0 IP, 7 H, 6 ER, 2 BB, 2 K. Though the bullpen ultimately unraveled, the Yankees expected much more from their ace. New York lost the first home game by an inexcusable score of 16-1.
CC Sabathia took the mound in Game four, an elimination game, delivering another weak outing: 3.0 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 1 K. CC struggled all night and, despite escaping several jams, could not lead the Yankees to a win. They lost their final postseason game 4-3.
Flat, Lifeless Offense
The offense looked dreary in the most critical moments this series. Boston outscored them 27-14 in the four games. The Yankees went nine consecutive scoreless innings between Games three and four. The Brox Bombers’ sole win at Fenway was one offensive highlight. For the most part, though, the offense failed to deliver.
Gary Sanchez and Aaron Judge were the only two players to hit homers, all of which occurred at Fenway. The typically homer-heavy team usually takes advantage of Yankee Stadium for this purpose. However, the quiet bats did not deliver any blasts. Miguel Andújar and Giancarlo Stanton both had poor series. No single player stepped it up in the way the Yankees needed.
At-bats were sloppy with swings at balls too high, too low, and out of the zone. Mostly, the offense seemed impatient; players struggled to work counts and challenge pitchers. The lowest point was the offense abandoning their final opportunity in the bottom on the ninth in Game 4. Despite a rally, they fell just one run short of tying Boston.
Fans expressed great discontent with several keys decisions manager Aaron Boone made in several games. Most noteworthy is his choice to leave Luis Severino in to start the fourth inning of game three after he allowed three runs. After struggling through the first three innings pitched, Severino allowed two singles and a walk to load the bases with no outs. Then, Boone called on Lance Lynn to pitch in a crucial situation.
Lynn allowed a walk and a double to extend the Sox’ lead to 7-0 and added a single before Boone brought in a different pitcher. Lynn was only able to record one out. By this point, the damage had already been done. In game four, Boone received criticism for failing to pull Sabathia sooner after struggling initially. He loaded the bases in the first inning, then allowed three runs to score in the third. CC simply didn’t have it all night–Boone recognizing this could have easily altered the game’s outcome. Nonetheless, the starters’ performances throughout this series were inexcusable: they should have done better despite Boone’s mismanagement.
Yankees won 100 games, won the WC and needed 2 wins at home to grab the ALDS. Instead, they were outscored, 20-4. They didn’t hit any homers, their greatest strength. And starting pitchers were left in too long in both games. In a season with high hopes, a tough ending.
— Jack Curry (@JackCurryYES) October 10, 2018
This series was tough to watch. The fans brought life and energy to Yankee Stadium, but the team did not feed off the momentum. Few expected the Yankees’ postseason to end quite this soon.
Looking ahead to next season, the Yankees have key adjustments and improvements to make. The 2018 team lacked components necessary to make a deeper postseason run. However, the team itself still has tremendous potential. Though the season’s result is disappointing, a few additions to the team can bring fans new hope for an unstoppable 2019.
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