PHILADELPHIA -- An additional layer of confidence develops within the Yankees' universe on the days that Luis Severino is scheduled to walk to the mound, and with good reason. More often than not, they have learned to count on a fast-paced evening from a right arm that has earned its
PHILADELPHIA -- An additional layer of confidence develops within the Yankees' universe on the days that Luis Severino is scheduled to walk to the mound, and with good reason. More often than not, they have learned to count on a fast-paced evening from a right arm that has earned its place among the game's elite.
Granted near-instant support as Aaron Hicks slugged the third pitch of the game over the center-field fence, Severino tallied nine strikeouts with a high-octane fastball-slider combination that stifled the Phillies over seven innings, leading the Yankees to a 6-0 Interleague victory on Tuesday night at Citizens Bank Park.
"Middle of the seventh, he's still throwing 100 [mph]," Giancarlo Stanton said. "Usually you face those guys and they can only go for one or two innings. He's got closer stuff. He's got some of the best stuff in the game for 100, 110 pitches. It's going to be a tough day for the opposition when he's up."
Severino was backed to become the Majors' first 12-game winner as Gleyber Torres drove in two runs, Greg Bird knocked a run-scoring single and Didi Gregorius homered as the Yankees tagged Jacob Arrieta for six runs (three earned) and nine hits over five innings. New York improved to 15-2 in games that Severino has started this year.
"Anytime they give me the ball, I want to win," Severino said. "I have to give credit to the guys that helped me, gave me some runs, and that gives me more confidence."
Hicks' homer, his 11th, was the Yankees' third leadoff shot of the season. Gregorius added his 15th in the fifth inning to pad New York's advantage against Arrieta, who walked one and struck out five.
"Especially a guy like that, you've got to get him early," Hicks said. "You want to start scoring runs as fast as you can, and when you've got pressure on him, just keep putting pressure on him. We were able to do that today."
Thanks to the early outburst and Severino's electric effort, the Yankees' 19th victory in 26 games never appeared to be in doubt. Severino scattered six hits without a walk in the 103-pitch gem, lowering his ERA to 2.10.
"It seemed like the life on his fastball -- it's always good," manager Aaron Boone said. "Tonight it seemed really special. As I like to say, that thing was crispy tonight."
Severino has allowed one or no runs in 24 starts since the beginning of 2017, the most in baseball over that span. After finishing third in the American League Cy Young race last season, behind the Indians' Corey Kluber and Chris Sale of the Red Sox, Severino could be in position to bring home hardware in the near future.
"There's a lot of season coming; more than half," Severino said. "I have to wait until the season is over. I just need to concentrate on making pitches and throwing good games."
Severino has recorded six or more strikeouts in 23 consecutive road starts, now the third-longest streak in Major League history. Only Randy Johnson (33 starts and 25 starts) and Pedro Martinez (28 starts) have had longer streaks. Severino's run is almost triple the length of the next-longest streak by a Yankees starter, with Roger Clemens and Melido Perez each having tallied eight.
YOU GOTTA SEE THIS
Severino's strikeout of Odubel Herrera in the fourth inning was clocked at 100.6 mph by Statcast™, which makes it the fastest third strike thrown by a starting pitcher this season. The previous mark was held by Sale (100.5 mph).
"He was as dirty as possibly could be," Phillies manager Gabe Kapler said. "He had a lot of life on the fastball. It was difficult to catch up to. The hitters knew it was going to be on top of them. He just had a little extra life today."
HE SAID IT
"He makes me nervous. He swings way too hard. I know about swinging hard. It hurts. It makes me very nervous." -- Hicks, on Severino's at-bats
Luis Cessa (0-0, 3.00 ERA) will have the ball on Wednesday at 7:05 p.m. ET as the Yankees try for a sweep of the three-game Interleague series against the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Cessa will be making his first start of the season, having last pitched on June 22 at Tampa Bay, when he fired two hitless innings. Right-hander Zach Eflin (5-2, 3.44) goes for Philadelphia.
Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and on Facebook.