There were no fireworks today.
After Friday’s benches-clearing incident and Saturday’s ejection of Mitch Talbot following an Alex Rodriguez plunking, the Indians and Yankees played a calm one Sunday that again sent the Yankee faithful home happy.
The Bombers broke open a 1-0 game in the fifth, scoring five times on their way to a 9-1 victory. Freddy Garcia, who lasted just 1 2/3 innings in the second shortest start of his career Tuesday against the Red Sox, pitched 6 2/3 innings of one-run ball for the victory.
The Yankees amassed nine runs despite failing to homer in the contest. Curtis Granderson, who had homered in three straight games, went 4-for-4 with a double and a sac fly. Brett Gardner went 3-for-4 with a triple, two doubles and three runs scored. Alex Rodriguez had three hits and three RBI.
Derek Jeter also had some fun, going 2-for-5 with two RBI. With four games left on the Yankees’ current homestand, he’s at 2,993 career hits.
The Bombers got to Josh Tomlin, who is fading just like his peripherals said he would. After starting the season 6-1 with a 2.41 ERA, he’s given up 22 runs over 24 innings in his last four outings. His ERA stands at 4.14 now and likely will continue to climb.
A.J. Burnett will try to send the Yankees to a four-game sweep when he takes on Carlos Carrasco in the series finale Monday.
Free agent left-hander Rich Hill is rumored to be entertaining a three-year, $40+ million offer from the Dodgers, reports Peter Gammons. The Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo corroborated the report, adding that Hill could receive somewhere between $46 and $48 million from his former team.
Hill, 36, pitched to a 2.12 ERA and 3.91 FIP in back-to-back stints with the Athletics and Dodgers in 2016. While a chronic case of blisters on his pitching hand limited the frequency of his starts, he still figures to be one of the most productive and noteworthy starting pitchers on the market this winter.
The Orioles, Yankees, Red Sox, Rangers and Astros have all been mentioned as potential suitors for the left-hander’s services, though Orioles’ GM Dan Duquette said the club has yet to make a play for Hill and ESPN’s Jim Bowden pointed out that the Red Sox are less involved in trade talks than other interested parties.
In light of the Astros’ deal for veteran designated hitter Carlos Beltran on Saturday, the Yankees are thought to be intensifying their pursuit of free agent Edwin Encarnacion, reports Jon Morosi of FOX Sports. The Yankees never made an official offer to Beltran, but remain in need of a DH/first baseman to give them a little more power outside of a Tyler Austin–Greg Bird combo in 2017.
The Red Sox, on the other hand, are reportedly withdrawing their interest when it comes to the Encarnacion sweepstakes. According to FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman, they will look for a hitter to beef up their lineup without taking a “big plunge” on the 34-year-old.
Encarnacion enjoyed another All-Star run with the Blue Jays in 2016, hitting at a .263/.357/.529 clip with 42 homers and a league-leading 127 RBI in 702 PA. He’s expected to command a significant contract in free agency, and agent Paul Kinzer said that a potential deal is unlikely to be finalized before the Winter Meetings as Encarnacion is not close to agreeing to any offer. Interested teams include the Blue Jays and the Astros, though Beltran’s signing appears to have effectively taken Houston out of the running for the slugger.