Aaron Judge, Yankees try to take series vs. sinking Tigers

MLB

When the New York Yankees were scuffling through a middling start, their common refrain was their lineup was significantly better than what it was showing.

Nights such as Friday are what the Yankees envisioned, and they look to produce another round of productive at-bats Saturday afternoon when they continue a three-game series with the struggling Detroit Tigers at Yankee Stadium.

The Yankees are 6-3 in their past nine games since starting the season 6-11. In the first 17 games, New York hit 17 homers. In the past nine games, the team has slugged 20.

On Friday, the Yankees opened the series with a dominating 10-0 victory. New York set a season high with five homers and cruised to its most lopsided win of the season.

Aaron Judge homered twice after sitting out the previous two games due to lower-body soreness. He hit a solo homer in the third inning and a grand slam in the fourth.

“Slow start this season,” Judge said. “That’s why we play 162. We’re staying aggressive. We’re attacking pitches in the zone. When we do that, this time is something special.”

Aaron Hicks, Clint Frazier and Rougned Odor also homered while Giancarlo Stanton had three hits as New York totaled a season-high 15 hits.

The Tigers have just two wins in their past 15 games, and they have been outscored 24-1 during a three-game losing streak. Detroit mustered four hits Friday while striking out 18 times. In the past three games, the Tigers are 9-for-77 (.117) with 40 strikeouts.

“I think we have to be realistic with where we’re at,” Tigers manager AJ Hinch said. “We’re not doing enough positive things right now to feel good about anything.”

Detroit struck out at least 10 times for the 17th time this season. The Tigers were blanked for the fifth time, and they are hitting .199.

New York’s Jameson Taillon (0-2, 6.23 ERA) is starting on five days’ rest and hopes to fare better the second time through the lineup. So far he is allowing opposing hitters to bat .375 (12-for-32) with three homers the second time through the lineup as opposed to .147 (5-for-34) the first time through the order.

Taillon last pitched Sunday in Cleveland when he allowed four runs on five hits in four innings of a 7-3 loss after the Yankees held a 3-0 lead.

Taillon’s only previous career outing against Detroit occurred on April 25, 2018, when he took the loss by allowing seven runs on 10 hits in 3 2/3 innings of a 13-10 loss for the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Tigers right-hander Spencer Turnbull (1-1, 3.27 ERA) makes his third start of the season after missing the opening weeks of the season recovering from a positive COVID-19 test.

Since going 3-17 with a 4.61 ERA in 2019, Turnbull is 5-5 with a 3.86 ERA in his past 13 starts. He last pitched Monday in a 3-2 home loss to the Kansas City Royals, when he allowed three runs on five hits in six innings.

Turnbull’s only previous start against the Yankees occurred on Sept. 12, 2019, in Detroit. He took the loss after allowing four runs on seven hits in five innings of a 6-4 setback.

–Field Level Media

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