Yankees takeaways from Friday's 8-2 loss to Rays, including sloppy all-around play

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Garrett Stepien
·3 min read
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Gary Sanchez ball passes 4/16
Gary Sanchez ball passes 4/16

The Yankees opened a three-game series with sloppy all-around play -- mustering three hits, making three errors and walking seven opposing batters -- against the Tampa Bay Rays with a lifeless 8-2 loss Friday at Yankee Stadium.

Five things to know from Friday's game

1. Free passes were an issue for the Yankees' pitching staff, and opening RHP Nick Nelson did not set the tone with a two-walk first inning. Nelson (0-1, 10.80 ERA) walked Rays leadoff batter Austin Meadows and Tampa Bay immediately cashed in, with consecutive doubles by Randy Arozarena and Brandon Lowe bringing home two early runs. Lowe knocked in Meadows and Arozarena, giving the Rays a 2-0 lead over New York.

2. RHP Michael King, who followed Nelson in the second inning, issued a trio of free passes but battled through ultimately three scoreless frames. King (0-0, 0.00 ERA) kept the Rays within striking distance with a commendable effort, fanning four and yielding two hits.

3. While the Yankees' continued to throw up a goose egg -- struggling against Rays RHP Michael Wacha (1-1, 4.20 ERA), who entered the game with a 7.00 ERA -- the floodgates opened in a four-run fifth inning. Yankees RHP Luis Cessa lasted through the frame, but not before a combination of walks, hits and errors gifted the Rays a 6-0 lead entering the bottom half.

Cessa (0-0, 1.17 ERA) allowed four runs (one earned) on two hits while striking out a pair but walking as many -- consecutively, loading the bases with two outs. Arozarena grounded a ball to 2B Rougned Odor, whose throw to 1B DJ LeMahieu went wide left as the Rays tacked on two more runs.

4. Wacha threw a one-hitter against the Yankees, striking out nine and walking two in six innings. The lone knock was a second-inning, one-out single to center by Urshela.

5. A pitching change in the seventh inning allowed the Yankees to see a different look with RHP Trevor Richards, and the likes of SS Gleyber Torres and DH Giancarlo Stanton took advantage. After Torres' leadoff single to right, Stanton served up a home run to right-center.

The opposite-field shot, Stanton's second of 2021, went 398 feet at 112.4 mph but hardly put a dent in an 8-2 Rays lead. Urshela (groundout), CF Aaron Hicks (lineout) and C Gary Sanchez (strikeout) went down in order after Stanton's long ball.

Highlights

What's next

The Yankees (5-8) and Rays (6-8) return to Yankee Stadium for a 1:05 p.m. game Saturday. Yankees LHP Jordan Montgomery (1-0, 3.27 ERA) and Rays ace RHP Tyler Glasnow (1-0, 0.46 ERA) are the projected pitchers.

Montgomery posted a no-decision start in this past Sunday's 8-4 win at the Rays, throwing 82 pitches (48 strikes) and yielding four runs on five hits (two home runs) while recording four strikeouts to two walks in five innings.