Monday, September 14, 2015

Recap: Yankees 4, Rays 1

Slade Heathcott hit a dramatic three-run home run in the ninth and the Yankees rallied to beat the Rays, 4-1, on Monday night at Tropicana Field.

The Ultimate Bailout: Making his first at-bat of the evening with two on and two out, Heathcott drilled a Brad Boxberger fastball into the first row in left -- breaking a 1-1 tie in the most unexpected of fashions. Heathcott was playing in his first big-league game since May 27, and had only come in as a defensive replacement in the eighth.

What Else Did You Expect?: Alex Rodriguez preceded Heathcott's blast with a clutch RBI double of his own, a line-drive to the right-center field gap to plate Brett Gardner. The Yankees appeared done following a Jacoby Ellsbury double play, but after Gardner walked and stole second, a spark of hope was ignited within them.

Like Old Times: The often-erratic CC Sabathia kept the Rays off the board for 6 2/3 innings, yielding just three measly singles while walking two and strking out six. Sabathia -- aided in no way by Brendan Ryan's fielding error -- found himself in a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the second, but escaped without damage when Kevin Kiermaier grounded into a force-out and J.P. Arencibia flied to left.

Not What You Want: Justin Wilson, working the eighth even though Dellin Betances was seen warming up, surrendered a go-ahead double to Logan Forsythe, putting the Yankees in a 1-0 hole one couldn't help but find unsurprising. Wilson didn't seem to have his best stuff from the beginning, and at 28 pitches, it wasn't that strange that number 29 went off the wall.

Near No-No: The Yankees didn't record their first hit off Erasmo Ramirez until the eighth, when a hot-shot from Carlos Beltran deflected into right. The single would remain the lone knock on Ramirez's final line, which included 7 2/3 innings of six-strikeout ball.

Next Up: The Yankees will look to continue their success in St. Petersburg with another matchup on Tuesday, sending Adam Warren (6-6, 3.29 ERA) to the hill versus Tampa Bay's Jake Odorizzi (7-8, 3.21 ERA). First pitch is set for 7:10 p.m. ET, airing live on YES and WFAN.

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)