The New York Yankees continue to win as they have now won 10 of their last 11 games and Gary Sanchez played a big role in their most recent victory on Tuesday night.
It seems things do not bother the Yankees catcher. Less than 24 hours after one of the Yankees starting pitchers spoke publicly about wanting to pitch to a different catcher, Sanchez looked unfazed on the field.
On Tuesday, the Yankees beat the defending World Series champion Houston Astros 4-0 thanks to a strong night from New York’s bullpen and a swing to remember by Sanchez. The Tuesday win at Minute Maid Park was only the Yankees second in the last year, including the AL Championship Series from last season.
The win came following a 14-strikeout dominating start by Astros ace Justin Verlander, who tossed eight innings of scoreless baseball, while the Yankees bullpen held the Astros hitters in check.
It all came down to the ninth inning and Houston may have learned a big lesson: Do not pitch to Yankees hitter Gary Sanchez if at all possible when a game is on the line.
Sanchez came to the plate with runners on second and third and Houston decided to pitch to him instead of walking him to load the bases.
When Sanchez realized he would be pitched too, he begin to look for a pitch in which he could drive somewhere and produce runs. He did just that.
Sanchez hit a three-run home run that was 423 feet in length off Astros closer Ken Giles and New York went ahead 3-0 and came away with the victory after scoring another run and retiring the Astros in the bottom half of the ninth.
Tuesday’s game marked the fifth time in the last eight games that Sanchez hit a home run and the third time over the last six days that his home run was game-deciding.
Last Thursday, Sanchez hit a walk-off homer against Minnesota, and hit a two-run 447-foot shot out of Angel Stadium Sunday that in the end was all the scoring New York needed to win.
While some may question Sanchez’s defensive value, he proved it on Tuesday said manager Aaron Boone after he caught six Yankees pitchers and just one wild pitch got behind him. The six relievers combined to throw a shutout and 13 strikeouts after Yankees starter Jordan Montgomery left after throwing just 7 pitches in the first inning.