Two losses in the Subway Series continued the most frustrating part of the season for the New York Yankees, but when it was over, manager Aaron Boone expressed excitement about adding another bat to a lineup in the midst of a rough patch.
Outfielder Andrew Benintendi was acquired late Wednesday night from Kansas City, and he might make his debut in pinstripes Thursday against the visiting Royals in the opener of a four-game series.
The Yankees still own the best record in the American League but are 2-5 since the All-Star break. New York is hitting .252 in those games but went 0-for-15 with runners in scoring position in the two games against the Mets.
“We know we’re really good, and we know we’re going to hit a snag in the season,” Boone said. “We actually embrace a little bit of adversity. We’ll power our way through it, there’s no question in my mind.”
Aaron Judge and Anthony Rizzo homered in the first inning of the Yankees’ 5-3 loss on Tuesday. Gleyber Torres hit a tying two-run homer in the eighth inning Wednesday, but the Yankees took a 3-2 defeat when Wandy Peralta allowed a game-ending single to Starling Marte.
While Marte was getting the hit, Yankees GM Brian Cashman was finalizing the deal for Benintendi, who was obtained for three minor-leaguers.
“We’ve got savages in the lineup and really good hitters,” Boone said before the trade became official. “Benintendi’s a great hitter, gets on base at a really high clip, hits from the left side, so, yeah, gives you some balance. So if we get him, that’s another really good big-league hitter to add to the mix that’s going to lengthen out a lineup.”
Benintendi batted .320 with three homers and 39 RBIs in 93 games for Kansas City this year, and he has an AL-best 34 multi-hit games. When he makes his debut, he likely will appear in left field, where he started 88 times for the Royals in 2022.
Benintendi flew to New York with the Royals, who went scoreless in the past two games while dropping a three-game series to the visiting Los Angeles Angels. After a 7-0 win on Monday gave Kansas City a three-game winning streak, the Royals struck out a total of 20 times while losing 6-0 on Tuesday and 4-0 on Wednesday.
Now the Royals will be without one of their top performers.
“We tell our young guys, just pay attention to how this guy goes about his business,” Kansas City manager Mike Matheny said of Benintendi.
New York will open the series with Jameson Taillon (10-2, 3.93 ERA) on the mound. The right-hander is 4-1 with a 6.09 ERA in nine starts since taking a perfect game into the eighth inning on June 2 against the Angels.
Taillon last pitched Friday in Baltimore, where he allowed two runs but labored through 2 2/3 innings before the Yankees earned a 7-6 win. That outing occurred after he tossed six innings of two-hit, one-run ball in a 14-1 win over the Boston Red Sox on July 16.
Taillon is 1-0 with an 0.47 ERA in three career starts against the Royals.
Kansas City will counter with right-hander Brady Singer (4-3, 3.82), who is 1-0 with a 2.66 ERA in his past four starts.
Singer last pitched Saturday, when he fanned 12 in six innings during a no-decision against the Tampa Bay Rays. He is 0-1 with an 8.59 ERA in two career starts against New York, both last year.
–Field Level Media