NEW YORK — In explaining the Yankees’ relatively quiet Trade Deadline approach, general manager Brian Cashman said that the organization was “forced into a double down,” believing that the value it could bring in by selling off assets was less than giving its current group more opportunities to turn an underwhelming season around.
Cross another day off the calendar. Carlos Rodón lasted just four innings, and the bats were quiet once again as the Yankees fell to the Rays, 5-2, on Tuesday night at Yankee Stadium. New York has lost four of five games in what was expected to be a crucial stretch.
Coming off his first victory in pinstripes, Rodón served up homers to Yandy Díaz and Randy Arozarena in a 97-pitch effort (63 strikes), permitting four runs on four hits. Rodón continued to struggle with his control, walking four and throwing a wild pitch while striking out five.
In moving only to acquire a pair of pitchers, right-handers Keynan Middleton and Spencer Howard, Cashman cast a reluctant vote of confidence for an offense that entered play on Tuesday with a batting average of .229 — 29th in the Majors, ahead of only the Athletics (.223).
Zach Eflin silenced the Bombers over six innings, allowing three hits without a walk and striking out five. The Yankees managed just one runner in scoring position against the right-hander, produced by Jake Bauers’ sixth-inning double.