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American League

Yankees Use Long Ball To Power Past Twins In AL Wild Card Game

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After falling behind early, the New York Yankees rallied and beat the Minnesota Twins 8-4 on Tuesday night at Yankee Stadium in the American League Wild Card Game.

For the first time since 2012, the Yankees are heading to the American League Division Series. They will take on the Cleveland Indians in the ALDS. Game 1 of that series is scheduled for Thursday in Cleveland.

Things did not look good for the Yankees early in the game. Their starting pitcher Luis Severino did not even make it out of the first inning. Brian Dozier led off the game with a home run, giving the Twins a 1-0 lead. A few batters later, Eddie Rosario took Severino deep for a two-run homer. Later in the inning, Yankees manager Joe Girardi decided to pull the plug on Severino and turn to his bullpen.

Everything started to turn around for the Yankees after that disastrous start. Twins starter Ervin Santana walked Brett Gardner to start off the bottom of the first inning, and Aaron Judge followed with a single. After Gary Sanchez fouled out to the catcher, Didi Gregorius came to the plate and blasted a three-run home run to right field.

With the game tied, Yankees relief pitcher Chad Green got the Twins to go quietly in the second inning. Gardner came up with two outs and no one on base in the bottom half of the inning. He hit a ball to deep right field that landed in the second deck. That home run gave the Yankees their first lead of the game.

All of the momentum was with the Yankees after that. The Twins loaded the bases with one out in the top of the third inning. They tied the game after Byron Buxton hit into a fielder’s choice. However, they failed to score any more runs as Yankees reliever David Robertson came in and struck out Jason Castro to end the inning.

The Yankees responded quickly and took the lead again on an RBI-single by Greg Bird. The big blow came in the bottom of the fourth inning, as Aaron Judge had his first memorable postseason moment. With Gardner on first base , Judge hit the second pitch he saw from Twins reliever Jose Berrios over the left field fence. At this point, the Yankees led 7-4. They ended up adding another insurance run in the bottom of the seventh inning.

The Twins offense could not get anything going for the rest of the game. Robertson pitched 3.1 scoreless innings in relief for the Yankees, and ended up getting the win. Tommy Kahnle came in after Robertson and pitched 2.1 scoreless innings. Girardi then put the ball in the hands of his closer Aroldis Chapman for the ninth inning. Chapman struck out the side, sealing the 8-4 victory for the Yankees.

Even though it did not end the way they wanted it to, the Twins still had a great season. They went from losing over 100 games in 2016 to being one of the two AL Wild Card teams in 2017. It is not often that you see that kind of turnaround.

The Yankees will now move on and play the Indians, a team that finished the regular season with the best record in the AL. The way the Indians have played lately, it will certainly be a difficult series for the Yankees to win.

 

American League

Rays Recall Austin Meadows

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The Tampa Bay Rays have recalled outfielder Austin Meadows to their active roster, according to the Tampa Bay Times’ Marc Tompkin.

In addition to Meadows, right handers Austin Pruitt and Chih-Wei Hu, along with lefty Hoby Milner, will be joining the big league roster.

Meadows, 23, posted a  .292/.327/.468 line over 165 plate appearances for the Pittsburgh Pirates earlier this season, prior to being sent over in exchange for starting pitcher Chris Archer.

 

 

 

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American League

Orioles’ Adam Jones Discusses Vetoed Trade, Free Agency

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Baltimore Orioles veteran outfielder Adam Jones has seen the organization undergo a major rebuild, and have traded away pieces to start from scratch. Jones was expected to be traded but it has been reported that the veteran exercised his 10-and-5 rights to veto a trade that would’ve sent him from Baltimore to the Phillies shortly before the non-waiver trade deadline.

“It just wasn’t right for me” Jones said, during an interview with Sara Perlman of MASNsports.com.

“I was playing center field at the time, and they wanted me to go play right field and platoon. That was the situation there, and it’s understandable. That’s how their roster was constructed, and that’s National League ball — double-switch and all that kind of stuff. … It wasn’t the right move for me, especially going into free agency. I’m not going into free agency looking like I’m [Nolan] Arenado, [Manny] Machado or [Bryce] Harper — obviously not — but I want to continue to create and maintain my stock. Going there to platoon, obviously in a good environment, a winning environment, would’ve hurt me in the long run. If I was 36, 37, a little older and toward the end of it all, of course — that would’ve been a very ideal and smart move, because it’d make sense. … I wish the Phillies the best, because I believe they have a really good team.”

Jones also discussed his pending free agency, adding, “Whoever wants me to run around [in the outfield] for them, whether it’s center, right, left, I could care less. I just want to play.”

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American League

Yankees Activate Aaron Judge

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The New York Yankees have activated slugger Aaron Judge for tonight;s game, manager Aaron Boone said, according to SNY’s Andy Martino.

Judge has not been cleared to hit in a live game, he will be able to play in the field and run the bases while he finished his preparations for his full return. Although Judge isn’t fully back, this step is welcomed for a Yankees team that his been dreadful at the plate for over a month, and has seen their lead for the top Wild Card spot dwindle.

 

 

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