The last thing the New York Yankees
needed was another loss to the Toronto Blue Jays, as every single game they have going down the stretch of the month of September is so crucial to their hopeful playoff run.
On the mound for the Yankees on Thursday night was the struggling Hiroki Kuroda
, who has not won a start for the Bombers since August 12 and is 0-5 during that time. Against the Blue Jays lineup, which is without Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion, Kuroda still couldn't find the win column.
Kuroda pitched two scoreless innings, but in the bottom of the third inning, Jose Reyes' RBI double made it 1-0, which was then followed by Brett Lawrie's RBI groundout to make it 2-0 Toronto.
The Yankees offense was kept off the board for most of the night by Toronto starter Todd Redmond, but Curtis Granderson
finally got the Yankees on the board and back into the game with a solo home run off Redmond that made it 2-1. The home run was Granderson's seventh dinger of the season in the short time he's played for the Yankees.
However, in the bottom of the sixth inning, the Blue Jays got that run back when Anthony Gose hit a solo home run off Kuroda to make the game 3-1. Kuroda still got through six innings pitched, allowed three runs on eight hits, walked four and struck out seven. It wasn't the best performance he had all season, but it was definitely better than some of the other starts he made in his 0-5 stretch in the month.
Following Kuroda was Joba Chamberlain
, who put up another lousy performance and really sunk the Yankees in the bottom of the seventh inning when Adam Lind crushed a three-run home run off Chamberlain to make it 6-1 and essentially pull away from the game. With that home run served, Chamberlain is ensuring that he won't be back with the Yankees in 2014, as he is a free agent after the season and has really lost a lot of value as a pitcher over the last four years.
The only other offense the Yankees were able to mount was an RBI groundout in the top of the ninth inning by Vernon Wells
to make it 6-2, but that was it for the Yankees, as they lost the game and series on Thursday night 6-2. Redmond got the win and improved to 4-2, Kuroda took the loss and dropped to 11-12; Janssen got his 32nd save of the season.
With the loss, the Yankees are now 80-73, which means they can win no more than 89 games if they were to win all nine of their remaining games left in the regular season, which at this point, seems like a very tough task. Also with the loss, the Yankees drop 3.5 games back in the American League Wild Card chase and are losing momentum heading into the final weeks of the season.
On Friday night, the Yankees will face off against the defending World Series Champions of last season, the San Francisco Giants, who have already been eliminated from playoff contention at 71-82. CC Sabathia (13-13, 4.90 ERA) will do battle against former Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum (10-13, 4.40 ERA.)
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, Curtis Granderson
, Hiroki Kuroda
, Joba Chamberlain
, New York
, New York Yankees
, Vernon Wells