A day after the Yankees suffered a walk-off loss to the Mets in their own stadium, they ended a seven-game losing streak when they won it in the bottom of the ninth. Even in victory, they needed a gift from ex-Yankee Dellin Betances, as the right-hander’s wild pitch with one out allowed Clint Frazier to …
A day after the Yankees suffered a walk-off loss to the Mets in their own stadium, they ended a seven-game losing streak when they won it in the bottom of the ninth.
Even in victory, they needed a gift from ex-Yankee Dellin Betances, as the right-hander’s wild pitch with one out allowed Clint Frazier to score from third to score the winning run in a 2-1 win Saturday over the Mets.
Betances’ unravelling started with a leadoff walk to Frazier. After Brett Gardner struck out, Jordy Mercer singled to right, sending Frazier to third.
Erik Kratz came to the plate, and after a mound visit from Mets manager Luis Rojas, Kratz squared to threaten a squeeze bunt. Betances fired a wild pitch over Wilson Ramos and Frazier came home easily.
“I was definitely trying to throw a fastball up and it was just a little too high,’’ Betances said. “It’s unfortunate, obviously.”
“I’m just glad I laid off it,’’ Kratz said of the wild pitch. “It was so far over Ramos’ head, I thought it might make people freeze.”
The Yankees will gladly take the result.
“That’s the beauty of the big leagues,’’ Kratz said. “You get to win games and it doesn’t matter how it happens.”
The Yankees had already seen their bullpen give up yet another late lead, as Adam Ottavino ruined a terrific outing by J.A. Happ when he allowed a homer to Ramos, the first batter he faced when he took over for Happ with one out in the eighth.
Chad Green and Aroldis Chapman had given up go-ahead homers in each of the Yankees’ previous three losses, but manager Aaron Boone remains confident in his bullpen.
“You’ve still got to lean on guys and count on guys to do their jobs,’’ Boone said. “Going through a bump in the road here or there, that doesn’t change.”
It helps that Betances took Ottavino and the Yankees off the hook in the bottom of the ninth, as the Yankees avoided losing eight straight games for the first time since 1995.
The Yankees had already wasted plenty of chances to pad the one-run lead Luke Voit gave them with a first-inning homer.
In the fourth, they got two runners thrown out at home.
Mike Tauchman singled with one out and moved to third when Robert Gsellman’s pickoff throw got away from Dominic Smith. Frazier then grounded to third and Tauchman went on a contact play and was thrown out by J.D. Davis. Brett Gardner then laced a double to center, but an excellent relay by Billy Hamilton and Amed Rosario was enough to just get Frazier at the plate and keep it a one-run game.
Happ, meanwhile, was excellent. The left-hander has publicly called out the Yankees, accusing them of skipping his starts in an attempt to avoid his vesting option of $17 million from kicking in next season.
Asked about the situation — and Happ’s accusations — before the game, GM Brian Cashman stated Happ has not pitched well this season or in 2019.
Happ responded with 7 ¹/₃ scoreless innings in the 90-pitch outing.
“I think right now my focus is going to be on the baseball,” Happ said when asked about his contract.
After Chapman’s scoreless ninth, the Yankees finally scraped together another run.
“It sucks to come in there and not get the job done,’’ Betances said. “I didn’t have anything. I was one pitch away from getting out of it, but that pitch got away from me.”
As a result, the Yankees ended up with their first victory since Aug. 17.
“It’s not the prettiest win, but we needed that bad,’’ said DJ LeMahieu, who returned from a sprained left thumb on Saturday. “Hopefully that sparks us and gets us back to playing the way we should be playing.”