Hiroki Kuroda carried a perfect game into the sixth inning and has fanned nine Tigers batters without issuing a walk through his first seven frames. But the Yankees currently trail in this ALCS Game 2.
Quintin Berry opened the top of the seventh inning with a ground-rule double to center field then scored from third base a couple batters later when Delmon Young hit into a fielder’s choice. Yankees shortstop Jayson Nix made a clean play on Young’s grounder, but second baseman Robinson Cano had trouble with the exchange and wasn’t able to turn two.
Cano is also in an 0-for-25 slump at the plate. According to the researchers at ESPN’s Stats & Info, that’s the longest hitless streak in a single postseason in the history of Major League Baseball.
The Yanks will hope for more late life from their offense. Detroit leads 1-0 in the bottom of the seventh.
Rays manager Kevin Cash said that pitcher Nathan Eovaldi will join the starting rotation on Monday or Tuesday to face the Athletics, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Eovaldi’s rehab outing with Triple-A Durham went well, even though he gave up eight runs in four innings.
Eovaldi, 28, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2016 after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He had arthroscopic surgery in March to remove loose bodies in his elbow. It’s been a long road back. Knowing Eovaldi needed to recover from surgery, the Rays signed him to a one-year, $2 million contract in 2017 that included a $2 million club option for 2018 that they exercised last November.
When Eovaldi last pitched, he ranked among baseball’s hardest throwers, particularly among starters. He averaged 97.1 MPH on his fastball in 2016. Among starters who racked up at least 100 innings that season, only the Mets’ Noah Syndergaard had a higher average velocity (97.9 MPH). It remains to be seen if he still has that velocity after undergoing two procedures on his elbow.
The Rays will be glad to have Eovaldi back. The club has sustained injuries to Jake Faria, Yonny Chirinos, and Jose De Leon.