Yankees ripped by Blue Jays as playoff outlook worsens
Aaron Boone says the Yankees “feel comfortable with our backs against the wall.”
He’s about to find out if that’s truly the case, as the reeling Yankees lost their third straight and seventh of nine with a 8-0 defeat to the Blue Jays on Monday afternoon in The Bronx.
With the AL East title becoming more and more of a pipe dream, the Yankees figure to be in a fight for the top wild-card spot so they can host the AL wild-card game next month.
But the Red Sox will have plenty to say about that — and the Blue Jays may play a role in whether the Yankees get to the postseason at all, as Toronto has won five straight and eight of nine overall to become a very real postseason threat.
After dropping two of three to the woeful Orioles over the weekend, the Yankees were shut down for most of Monday by left-hander Hyun Jin Ryu, who allowed just three hits in six scoreless innings.
Jameson Taillon coming off two straight subpar outings, gave up back-to-back homers to Marcus Semien and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. in the top of the first and the Yankees never answered.
Semien’s 36th of the season was walloped into the seats in left, while Guerrero went the other way into the short porch in right for his 40th of the year to give Toronto a 2-0 lead.
Taillon needed 26 pitches to get through the inning, not what the Yankees needed with a depleted bullpen that was already taxed.
After allowing just one homer in five outings, Taillon has given up seven over his last five, but he was otherwise excellent on Monday.
The Yankees defense was dreadful early, as Gleyber Torres, a day after making a lazy, boneheaded play that resulted in an infield hit, made a fielding error on a routine chopper by Lourdes Gurriel Jr. with one out in the second. He was bailed out by Gurriel, who was thrown out trying to steal second, as Taillon caught him off first.
But Gio Urshela followed with an error on a Danny Jansen grounder down the line before Kevin Smith flied to deep right to end the inning.
Urshela’s ugly return to the field continued in the third, when he fumbled an easy grounder from Guerrero for his second error of the day.
Instead of a potential inning-ending double play, Taillon was left with runners on first and second with one out for Bo Bichette.
This time, the Yankees were saved by Brett Gardner, who made a diving catch of Bichette’s fly ball to shallow center. Gardner also threw to second to double off Springer to end the inning and keep it a two-run game.
Ryu, who had a no-hitter until the sixth inning in his previous start against Baltimore, retired the first seven Yankees he faced until Gardner singled up the middle with one out in the third.
Urshela and DJ LeMahieu grounded out to strand Gardner.
Taillon, meanwhile, was solid after the first. He had a 10-pitch fourth, a six-pitch fifth and a seven-pitch sixth without allowing a base runner.
Toronto removed Ryu after six dominant scoreless innings for Trevor Richards.
Richards struck out Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton. Rizzo reached on a bunt single, but Gary Sanchez popped out.
In Brooks Kriske’s first appearance since throwing four wild pitches in an inning on July 22, the right-hander allowed a leadoff homer to Hernandez then a grand slam to Semien to turn things into a blowout.