After an impressive Opening Day performance Thursday afternoon, the Bombers followed up their offensive rout with another victory Friday night in Toronto.
- New York Yankees: 4 (2-0)
- Toronto Blue Jays: 2 (0-2)
- American League, FINAL
- Rogers Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
After what seemed to be a perfect Opening Day win, their first since 2011, the Yankees succeeded Thursdays’ performance with another win Friday night, led by Masahiro Tanaka’s dazzling six-inning performance.
The offense jumped out to an early lead in the 2nd, courtesy of Brandon Drury’s booming line drive double off the right-field wall, scoring Gary Sanchez who reached on a fielder’s choice.
An RBI double by Brandon Drury gives the @Yankees a 1-0 lead. #MLBNShowcase pic.twitter.com/4993WjV3tV
— MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) March 30, 2018
That 1-0 lead would not last long, however, as Randal Grichuk would tie the game with a long solo shot to left center off Masahiro Tanaka, the only run he would give up in his 79 pitch performance.
Enter the top of the fourth, and Brandon Drury would again give the Yankees the lead, this time, lining an RBI single into left, scoring Didi Gregorius.
Two innings later, Tyler Wade stepped up to the plate with the bases loaded, looking to notch his first hit of 2018, and that’s exactly what he would do. Wade would line a 94 mph fastball into center field, scoring two and extending the Yankee lead to 4-1.
On the pitching end, Tommy Kahnle would relieve Tanaka after the 6th, and work a 1-2-3 7th inning before Aaron Boone would turn the ball over to David Robertson an out into the 8th, who would get two quick outs on five pitches.
Enter the 9th and Aroldis Chapman would lock down the save, while surrendering a run in the meantime for his first of the season, securing the Yankees 2nd win of the 2018 campaign.
Tanaka’s Start a Postive Sign
Sheesh RT @PitcherList: Masahiro Tanaka's "World Famous" Splitter.
Downright disgusting. pic.twitter.com/ueCgFbRNVj
— Dunn (@JMDHeisman) March 31, 2018
To say Masahiro Tanaka’s 2017 season was a bumpy road would be an understatement. However, after a spectacular postseason where he limited hitters to just two runs in 20 innings and tonight’s eight-strikeout performance, is it safe to say the right-hander is back to his 2014-2016 form?
If Tanaka’s ace-like self reappears consistently throughout the 2018 campaign, then the narrative that the Yankees are a high-end starter away from being World Series favorites should begin to fade.
The Yankees return to the Rogers Centre Saturday afternoon for the third game of the series Saturday afternoon.
CC Sabathia gets the nod for the Yankees looking to win the series in his first start of the season.
Marco Estrada will counter for the Blue Jays looking to bounce back from the 4.98 ERA campaign he posted in 2017.
First pitch is scheduled for 4:05 PM ET on YES Network or can be listened to at WFAN 660/101.9FM.