Category: Paul O’Neill

The Yankees lost to the Indians on Paul O’Neill Day

Paul O'Neill baseball card

Paul O’Neill baseball card

The Yankees lost to the Cleveland Indians 3-0 on Saturday afternoon in the second game of the series. The offense only had five hits, and the only player who had a multi-hit game was Jacoby Ellsbury, who had two hits. The Yankees were also collectively 0-9 with runners in scoring position, which led to them not scoring any runs.

However, the pitcher that shutdown the Yankees offense is one of the best pitchers in the American League and by far the best pitcher in the Indians rotation. Corey Kluber pitched six innings and had 10 strikeouts and only one walk. Kluber is tied for the most wins in the AL with 13, is fourth in the AL with a 2.46 ERA and is second in the AL with 187 strikeouts.

Joe Girardi was impressed with how Kluber pitched against the Yankees. “He has just got really good stuff,” Girardi said. “He has got an outstanding slider that he used to right handers and left handers. I know there was a lot of talk about what we faced this week with Detroit, but if you look at the top five guys in the AL, he is right there. You are going to run into guys that have great stuff and sometimes you are going to get them and sometimes they are going to shut you down.”

One of the five hits that the Yankees had was an infield single by the future first ballot Hall of Famer Derek Jeter. That single was his 3,431st hit of his career, which put him in sole possession of sixth place on the all time hits list. He had previously been tied with Honus Wagner for sixth place. Jeter now has more hits than any other shortstop in baseball history.

Girardi is impressed with Jeter’s milestone and how he has performed this season. “It is unbelievable,” Girardi said. “I mean the people that he has passed, it is unbelievable. You know, this guy has been consistent for us all year long, and there were a lot of questions about where he would be at. He has played pretty well.”

Jeter was disappointed that the team lost, but he is proud that he now has more hits than anyone else who has played shortstop. “It is one of those wow moments,” Jeter said. “To have more hits than anyone that has played the position at all is something you can be proud of. Obviously, I would like to have won the game, but it is something I will be able to tell my kids one day about. Like I said, Honus Wagner, he is the last one on the last that played short at all, that one hits home a little bit.”

Brandon McCarthy got the start for the Yankees and picked up his first loss in his six starts with the team. He pitched well, as he only allowed two runs and had eight strikeouts in 6.1 innings, but the two-run homer Jose Ramirez hit off of him in the second ended up being the difference in the game. That was Ramirez’s first career home run.

All-Star Michael Brantley’s homer off of the foul poll in the eighth off of Chase Whitely was the third run that the Indians scored.

The Yankees will look to win the three-game series with Hiroki Kuorda pitching in Sunday’s 1:05 p.m. game. He had his second consecutive solid start on August 5 as he allowed three runs in seven innings. Carlos Carrasco, who is not nearly the pitcher that Kluber is, will be making only his fifth start of the season for the Indians.

Before yesterday’s game, the Yankees honored Paul O’Neill with a much deserved plaque in Monument Park. He was nicknamed the “The Warrior” for his hustle and intensity during games. O’Neill played for the Yankees from 1993-2001 and was an integral part of four World Series winning teams. “Let’s face it, we were all lucky to play for the Yankees, especially at that time,” O’Neill said during his speech.