The final score looked a lot closer than it was.
Charlie Morton allowed a single to start the game and then struck out the next seven hitters he faced. He ended up giving up four runs (three of which came courtesy of some brutal sequencing and a home run) in the game to the team averaging the most runs per game in baseball, so all things considered it should be chalked up as a pretty decent outing for Morton.
Offensively, of course, is where the real story lies.
George Springer started off the game with an eight pitch plate appearance that ended with a home run - his seventh lead off home run of the season - and Josh Reddick hit the very next pitch of the game off the second deck facade in right field for back to back home runs. Just like that, nine pitches into the game, the Astros had a two run lead. After Jose Altuve, who has looked decidedly uncomfortable at the plate recently, flew out to Aaron Judge for the first out, Carlos Correa and Carlos Beltran each singled to right field, Yulieski Gurriel was hit by a pitch, and then this happened.
The Astros became just the second team in history to homer three times in the first inning against the Yankees in the Bronx with that swing of the bat.
George Springer would add his second home run of the night to lead off the second inning and essentially slam the door on Masahiro Tanaka’s evening.
Giovanny Gallegos chipped in three strong relief innings to limit the damage - the Yankees received lackluster starts from both of their starters for the Mother’s Day Double-Header, but had good long relief outings keep the bullpen from being over-taxed in each game - for the Yankees, and Chasen Shreve followed with two and a third excellent relief innings of his own. Tommy Layne notched an inning and two thirds of hitless baseball - actually, the Astros managed only one hit off of the trio of long relievers - before Dellin Betances took over with two outs in the top of the ninth inning just to get some game work in. Betances went on to give up two hits and an unearned run but really, the damage came before the second inning even ended.
Michael Feliz was incredibly dominant, allowing a hit and otherwise striking out all four of the hitters whom he retired for outs. Brad Peacock was also good in his inning of relief, and Dayan Diaz was quite interesting indeed. Through unfortunate timing in Spring Training and throughout the course of the Triple-A season to date, this writer had not had a chance to see Diaz pitch until tonight. The fastball has good velocity and great life, and when it’s located it can be devastating. The problem tonight for Diaz was that his control was quite spotty - exquisite one pitch, erratic the next. In any event he certainly looks like a surprisingly interesting arm to follow, if you weren’t already.
The Astros will move on to Miami to open a three game interleague set at 6:10 PM CT tomorrow. Tonight, they will sleep on the plane with faces alight in smile...they just beat the Yankees in three of four games in Yankees Stadium and own a 26-12 record - the best mark in baseball.