Well, these games hurt badly. The Astros did everything they could to win the series opener at Yankee Stadium, but the Yankees struck first this time after snatching a 7-6 win off the Astros. Closer Ryan Pressly fell off the Earth and blew a three-run lead in the ninth as Aaron Hicks swatted the fourth three-run home run of the contest and Aaron Judge hit a walk-off single to end it.
Until the ninth, it was a beautiful game for Houston. The Astros were shining in their return to the Bronx and were led by a solid pitching performance from Framber Valdez plus two three-run shots by Alex Bregman and Yordan Álvarez for his 22nd dinger of the campaign.
Valdez delivered his 11th quality start in a row. He found composure after a rough first inning capped by Giancarlo Stanton’s three-run jack. After walking Hicks in the first, Framber retired 14 straight hitters and finished his outing by striking out Gleyber Torres with his 101st pitch of the night.
The Astros’ southpaw worked six innings and allowed two hits and three earned runs. He gave up three bases on balls and fired seven strikeouts.
Valdez’s performance combined with Bregman and Álvarez’s four-baggers. Bregman went 2-for-4 with three RBIs to extend his hitting streak to six games while also launching his third long ball of that period. Regarding Yordan, it was his fifth bomb in as many games and the eighth overall in June. The Cuban star keeps adding to an unforgettable month.
After five innings of quick baseball and zeroes, the ninth inning got interested for the Yankees. With a comfortable lead in paper, it was straight pain caused by Pressly in what was his first blown save since May 5. The Astros’ closer began the inning by walking both Stanton and Torres. Immediately, Aaron Hicks tied the game with one swing, sending the ball 412 feet over the right-field fence.
A few plays later and with Ryne Stanek on the mound, Judge hit a laser single to right field to walk it off.
Tomorrow is another day, right? On Friday night, both teams will present an interesting duel between Justin Verlander and Luis Severino. Another good matchup at Yankee Stadium for the second game of the series.