The Yankees defeated the Miami Marlins at Yankee Stadium, 2-1, on Wednesday night to remain one-game out of first place in the AL East. They had previously lost their last two games and five of their previous six overall.
Alex Rodriguez‘s RBI single up the middle to score Chase Headley gave the Yankees a 1-0 lead in the first inning. His single in the fifth inning was his 2,997th hit, which means that he is now only three hits away from tying Roberto Clemente and becoming the 29th player with 3,000 hits.
He is going to hit his 3,000th hit at Yankee Stadium as the Yankees will play seven more games at home starting tonight against the Marlins. That is fitting because fans at Yankee Stadium will give him a standing ovation that he would not get at an away stadium. After the game he said that he was excited to see his former teammate, Ichiro Suzuki.
“I am excited to see Ichiro all the time because he is the only guy older than me in the league,” Rodriguez said. Rodriguez said that he didn’t know Pineda had a no-hitter until “(Christian) Yelich hit the homer and Michael or Flash said so on TV.”
Michael Pineda (8-3, 3.54 ERA) had a no-hitter through six innings and ended up allowing one run in 6.2 innings, while striking out nine and walking two. Yelich’s homer to leadoff the seventh inning on a fastball was the only hit that Pineda allowed. All of his pitches were working for him on Wednesday night, which helped him allow two run or less for the eighth time this season.
“I tried to attack the hitters, pitch my game and be happy,” Pineda said.
Pineda threw 100 pitches and out of those 100, he threw 64 cutters and 35 sliders. It is key for his slider to work as an out pitch, and he threw a slider on six of the nine strikeouts that he had. He admitted that he was not able to throw his slider the way he wanted to in his previous start when he allowed 5 runs in 4.1 innings.
He forms what is the best No. 1 and No. 2 in the rotation in the AL East with Masahiro Tanaka. Brian McCann, who has caught Pineda’s previous eight starts this season, was impressed with how he threw all of his pitches.
“He could do whatever he wanted with the ball tonight,” McCann said. “He got ahead in the count and his slider was on.”
In the fifth inning, Chase Headley scored what would be the game-winning run on a single by Carlos Beltran to center field. The Yankees were only 2-8 with runners in scoring position, but they were able to get hits when it counted to get the win.
The Yankees had a call go in their favor as Adeiny Hechavarría slid home after Dee Gordon’s grounder to first and was ruled safe after Garrett Jones’s high throw to McCann. However, the play went under review, and it was correctly ruled that McCann did tag Hecavarria just before his foot touched home plate meaning that the Blue Jays still had one run instead of two.
Dellin Betances came into the game with runners on first and third with one out (Gordon was his first batter) and he would go onto record his first five out save. He got Derek Dietrich to line out to right to end the eighth and was able to strikeout Jeff Mathis to end the game.
Before Marcell Ozuna’s single and Justin Bour’s walk in the ninth, Betanaces was able to completely overmatch Giancarlo Stanton, who is the best hitter in the NL. He threw him a 99mph fastball, a nasty slider and then struck him out on a curve ball. Betances, who now has two consecutive saves since stepping in as the closer while Andrew Miller is on the disabled list, has an outstanding 0.26 ERA (one earned run this season) with 57 strikeouts in 37 innings.
“I feel good,” Betances said. “I am just trying to go out there and make pitches. I am just trying to help the team win. Girardi has told me to be ready in the eighth inning in case guys get on. I love pitching against guys like him (Stanton). It gives me more adrenaline.”
CC Sabathia will get the start for the Yankees on Thursday night and will try to give the team their first winning streak since they won seven straight from June 1 to June 9.
If Sabathia gets the win in the series finale against the Marlins, he will become the 14th major-league pitcher to defeat all 30 teams.