Yankees lose fourth in a row as Angels have their number

ANAHEIM, Calif .– Anthony Rizzo jumped onto the pitch during batting practice here Monday afternoon to enthusiastically greet his former...


ANAHEIM, Calif .– Anthony Rizzo jumped onto the pitch during batting practice here Monday afternoon to enthusiastically greet his former manager, Joe Maddon. The two, who will always be linked to each other in high-definition footage of the Chicago Cubs 2016 World Series title, stood up and visited for several minutes as the Los Angeles Angels finished batting practice and as the Yankees were starting.

Shortly after, near the Angels’ dugout canoe, Maddon spoke about one of his favorite players who became something of a baseball son for the manager in those heady days at Wrigleyville. But during their conversation, Maddon said with a chuckle, Rizzo went a bit too far. He asked what the skipper thought of his swing.

“I won’t tell him until Wednesday,” Maddon said, after the three-game series ended.

It’s not the only secret Maddon and his team are keeping from the Yankees this week.

The Angels ‘6-4 win on Tuesday night followed an 8-7 win in Game 1 of the series on Monday and suddenly the Yankees’ 13-game winning streak turned into a four-game losing streak.

“Unacceptable,” said Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner, assessing a situation in which all of the Yankees’ gains over the winning streak have now been lost.

At the start, they were 7.5 games away from first place. By the time they got anchored in – count them – five double games Tuesday and lost another game to the Angels, they trailed first place Tampa Bay by eight games. This despite Los Angeles being without superstar Mike Trout (calf tight) since May and slugger Anthony Rendon (hip surgery) since early July.

As another World Series-winning manager Jim Leyland liked to recall after a tough day in the big leagues: “Hey, the other guys drive Cadillacs too. Translation: Even the bottom performers are pretty good in this league.

Aaron Boone will get there one day, he and the Yankees hope. Preferably even at this year’s Fall Classic. But with the month of September about to begin, it is still sometimes difficult to decipher between what is real and what is a mirage.

Two-time Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber joined the rotation for the first time since May (sprained right shoulder) on Monday and pitched three innings without a hitting to the Angels – only to cede a grand slam to Jack Mayfield in the Fourth.

Jameson Taillon, who was 7-0 with a 3.05 ERA in his last 13 starts dating back to June 18, and was undefeated on a career high 15 starts dating back to June 8, followed Kluber Tuesday also throwing three without a hit. innings – before yielding a three-run homerun to Jared Walsh in the fourth.

Then, in the fifth, Shohei Ohtani slipped home from the back of a delayed double steal during another three-run inning. He throws (but not Tuesday, as the Angels postponed his scheduled start after being hit by a pitch last weekend), he hits, he runs. It’s like he’s three or four.

“We’ve obviously been playing really good baseball for a while now,” Gardner said. “Obviously, these last days, it’s four games for a total of six points. We had the opportunity to change the outcome, we just couldn’t. “

The Yankees have 122 double games this season, second in majors behind Washington’s 125. During their 13-game winning streak, they have scored four in total. But in the sudden four-game losing streak, they’re down to nine.

Notably, when Joey Gallo, the team’s all-or-nothing slugger, made a double play in the fourth inning on Tuesday, it was the third time he had done so in his last nine at-bat appearances. Like WFAN’s Sweeny Murti highlighted on Twitter, Gallo had only managed nine double plays in his first 1,920 major-league batting appearances.

“It’s a game we should have opened and didn’t,” said Boone, noting Angels second baseman David Fletcher “made some really impressive double plays.”

Or, as Maddon said of Fletcher, “It was a virtuoso performance at second base.”

As they looked to pitcher Gerrit Cole to stop a losing streak in Wednesday’s series final, Gardner said the way he chooses to view the Yankees’ current status is having won 13 of their Last 17 matches.

Fair enough.

Things change quickly in this game, just ask Maddon and Rizzo.

In Chicago, the Cubs started playing Tuesday, Aug.6-20, the team’s fourth worst calendar month in at least 25 games in its history, according to the Elias Athletic Bureau.

Here Maddon and his club torment a team that a week ago couldn’t lose – even though Rizzo was 4 for 8 with a homer, two doubles and a single in the first two games of this series and had reached base in five of the nine plate appearances.

Spoiler alert for this Maddon review on Wednesday: Rizzo’s swing looks pretty good. As for his other secrets, well, the Angels have now beaten the Yankees in four of six games in 2021. That’s mom’s word.

Meanwhile, as the Yankees try to fix the problem, the Tampa Bay Rays, who can’t lose, have won nine in a row.

“I focus on the New York Yankees at all times,” said Rizzo. “There are going to be other teams that will play good baseball, but as long as we take care of ourselves. It’s September 1 tomorrow and we just need to adapt, keep playing baseball well and in a couple of weeks we’ll hold our heads up and see where we are.



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Newsrust - US Top News: Yankees lose fourth in a row as Angels have their number
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