CC Sabathia dominated the Orioles over the first seven innings tonight, but the Orioles had their chance in the top of the eighth. They failed to deliver the knockout punch.
Matt Wieters led off the eighth with a single and Manny Machado drew a walk before Mark Reynolds struck out swinging for the first out of the inning. Lew Ford, yes that Lew Ford, then drove Wieters home with a single into left field past a diving Derek Jeter.
Things got really interesting after Robert Andino hit a tapper back to Sabathia. Eric Chavez wasn’t covering third base, so Sabathia decided to make a throw to second base. However, Lew Ford beat the throw, which set up a bases-loaded situation. Sabathia managed to escape the jam by striking out Nate McLouth and getting J.J. Hardy to ground out to shortstop.
The Yankees are currently up in the bottom of the eighth and hold a 3-1 lead.
Yankees GM Brian Cashman said on Tuesday that reliever Dellin Betances will begin the regular season on the injured list due to inflammation and impingement in his right shoulder, the YES Network’s Jack Curry reports. Curry adds that Betances will try throwing again in three to five days.
Betances, who turns 31 years old later this month, has allowed two runs on two hits and two walks with four strikeouts in 3 1/3 innings this spring. He has experienced diminished fastball velocity, which is now explained by his injury. The right-hander is coming off of another excellent season in which he posted a 2.70 ERA with 115 strikeouts and 26 walks across 66 2/3 innings.
Fortunately, the Yankees have more than enough depth in the bullpen to withstand Betances’ absence. Aroldis Chapman, Adam Ottavino, and Zach Britton will handle the late innings and Betances will slot back in whenever he is healthy.