Rangers ride 10-run third to rout of Yankees
NEW YORK -- Shin Soo-Choo homered and drove in four runs as the Rangers enjoyed a 10-run third inning, sending CC Sabathia to the showers early in a 15-4 rout of the Yankees on Saturday at Yankee Stadium.
Each Texas starter had at least one hit in the contest and the Rangers sent 14 men to the plate in the big third inning, which included a key Carlos Beltran error in right field. Sabathia was charged with six runs as he lasted just 2 1/3 innings, marking his shortest non-injury start in pinstripes.
The Rangers have won four straight to improve to 20-23, while the skidding Yanks have dropped five straight and nine of their past 10.
"We have to keep our foot on the pedal," manager Jeff Banister said. "We can't look up, we have a lot of yard work to do. We have to continue to work hard and show up every day."
The huge cushion made it a breezy victory for Texas right-hander Nick Martinez, who worked seven innings and held the Yanks to two runs on five hits. With the contest well out of hand, the Yanks had first baseman Garrett Jones record the final two outs in relief; Jones said he had not pitched since high school.
"It's frustrating, especially when we haven't been playing well," Sabathia said. "You kind of want to put an end to that and be a guy to try to help us. I couldn't do that today."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Choo leads big inning: The Rangers scored 10 runs in the third, with Choo contributing an RBI single to bring home the first run as well as his three-run home run. Eleven hitters reached base on eight hits, two walks and a hit batter. Delino DeShields reached twice in the inning on a walk and infield hit, while Prince Fielder had two singles. More >
Martinez dodges early trouble: Martinez picked up what appeared to be an easy win but he did have one difficult moment. Martinez began the game by walking Brett Gardner. He got Beltran to fly out, but Alex Rodriguez also drew a walk. Martinez was able to escape trouble by getting Mark Teixeira on a pop to third and striking out Chase Headley. More >
Sabathia stumbles: Yankees manager Joe Girardi has repeatedly said that Sabathia is pitching better than his numbers indicate, but Saturday was not one of those situations. It marked Sabathia's second-shortest start as a Yankee; he recorded just four outs on June 21, 2009, at Miami. The Yanks' sloppy defense didn't help; shortstop Didi Gregorius knocked down DeShields' infield single but was unable to do anything with it, and Beltran allowed Fielder's run-scoring single to go under his glove as a second run scored. More >
"It's no fun when you go through it," Girardi said. "You don't expect to go through it for this long of a period. We need to turn it around. We need to come out and pitch well tomorrow, we need to play good defense and we need to have timely hitting. That's what winning is all about."
Pitching in: With his relief appearance Saturday, Jones became the first position player to pitch for the Yankees since Dean Anna on April 19, 2014. Jones got Choo to ground out on a curveball and induced a pop-up from Tommy Field in the ninth, and said that he has not pitched since 1999, when he was in his senior year at Andrew High School in Tinley Park, Ill. More >
Mr. Rogers' neighborhood: As the Yanks' long reliever, Rogers' job is to stop the bleeding, but he surrendered seven runs in three innings. Choo hit his three-run homer off the right-hander in the third and the Rangers added three more in the sixth after Rogers walked the first two batters of the inning. Fielder hit a two-run homer in the seventh off Branden Pinder.
"We are playing good baseball as a team. We had some unfortunate games, but they were not terrible and we're still grinding through it and starting to take control of things." -- Martinez
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
The Yankees were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position during the seven innings when Martinez was on the mound. Opponents are hitting .104 against Martinez in those situations, the lowest in the American League.
Over their past 10 games, the Yankees' starting pitchers are 1-8 with a 6.61 ERA (37 earned runs in 50 1/3 innings).
Rangers: Yovani Gallardo makes his 10th start for the Rangers at 7:05 p.m. CT Sunday against the Yankees in the Bronx. Gallardo is 1-5 with a 4.63 ERA in his last six starts and is pitching for the first time ever in Yankee Stadium.
Yankees: Before Sunday's game, the Yankees will retire Bernie Williams' No. 51 and dedicate a Monument Park plaque to the four-time World Series champion. Gates will open at 6 p.m. ET for the 8:05 p.m. ET contest, and fans are asked to be in their seats by 7 p.m. ET. Left-hander Chris Capuano (0-1, 12.00 ERA) draws the start for New York.