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(Photo Credit: New York Yankees) - From March 15

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Judge, Torres Homer In Wild 13-12 Loss

Just a week remains until the New York Yankees take the field in the Bronx to begin the regular season, and the daily matchups against Philadelphia, Detroit, and Toronto are starting to wear out. New York pitching gave up two three-run bombs and dug two large deficits, but each time, the offense recovered before eventually losing a roller coaster ride, 13-12, to the Phillies. Meanwhile, Aaron Judge finally opened his spring home run account and Gleyber Torres notched his third.

Power Hours

Judge has downplayed his struggles elevating the ball this spring, and this writer is willing to give him the benefit of the doubt, as he’s notorious for his tinkering proclivities. When Matt Moore offered up a letter-high fastball right over the heart of the plate in the first inning, Judge did not miss it.

 

Judge’s hitting .250 with just a .708 OPS for the spring, but no one should be worried about Judge, particularly because he’s injury-free at the moment. The Yankees quickly surrendered the lead Judge gifted them, as the Phillies put up a five-spot in their half of the first and added two more in the second.

Torres, who had slowed after a white-hot start to Grapefruit League play, joined the fun with a three-run bomb of his own, also off Moore.

 

The big bats are rounding into form as the regular season approaches. It is definitely time to head back north.

King Abdicates The Throne

Michael King was hoping to build on a very strong effort last time out against Baltimore, but he was shelled in two and a third innings of work. The big blow off of King was a three-run homer from Didi Gregorius, which I suppose Yankees fans could tolerate. Given the sudden significant injuries in the bullpen, King’s status on the team to start the season isn’t in doubt. He came into camp with an outside chance at a flex starter’s role at the very least, and he hasn’t looked worthy of that on the whole.

The Lo Show

While King has faltered in his auditions, Jonathan Loáisiga has largely impressed. He threw three innings in Clearwater, and the first two of them were impeccable, featuring a strikeout of Bryce Harper on a nasty changeup. Lóaisiga did allow a run in his third inning of work, but he’s done more than enough this spring to lock down a bullpen spot.

Big Time Comeback

In the bottom of the eighth, Tyler Lyons gave up a three-run home run to 21-year-old catcher Logan O’Hoppe that appeared to put the game out of reach at 12-6. But in the ninth, the Yankees mounted a spirited rally, including RBI hits from Kellin Deglan and Ezequiel Duran.

Down by two runs with two outs and runners on second and third, Estevan Florial grounded a sharp single to left field to tie the game. It was all for nothing, however, as Nestor Cortes Jr. gave up the winning run in the bottom of the ninth.

Up Next

Baltimore comes to Tampa for the final time this spring for a 6:35 PM start on Friday. Gerrit Cole is set to make his last start before the regular season.

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