The New York Yankees in the Bronx appear to be facing yet again in the 10th inning against the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday night. Another frustrating loss. At the top of the 10th inning, Aroldis Chapman walked a pair of batters to the base before striking out Jose Siri. Then Francisco Mejia’s ground-ball double cleared the bases and gave the Rays a 7-4 lead. Chapman pulled an inning to put Yandy Diaz out for the third time, but by then, the Rays had a 91.2 percent chance of giving the Yankees their fourth straight loss. However, in the second half, substitute Jalen Bix allowed Gleb Torres Hit a line-drive single and go Anthony Rizzo. Adding automatic runner Aaron Judge means a full base situation for Josh Donaldson. Right-handed Donaldson has struggled uncharacteristically against opponents this season, but he didn’t miss this 0-1 fastball by Beekers at the top of the box :
It was an opposing shot that left the bat at 100.1 mph and traveled 349 feet — enough to clear the short porch on the right — — – and gave the hosts an unlikely 8-7 win. It marked Donaldson’s eighth career homer and his seventh career major. It also made him elite company for the Yankees:
The 36-year-old third baseman hasn’t quite been himself this season, as he’s now hitting 12 homers in 97 games, slashing his .223/.307/.391 for the year. However, his explosiveness on Wednesday night surpassed all of that. This is a moment — and most importantly, a victory — that the No. 1 Yankees desperately need . The Yankees went 56-21 in June, but they’ve gone 17-24 since then. Most recently, they’ve gone 9-17 since the All-Star break and are now 4-11 in August. Aaron Boone’s club has a 10-game lead in the Eastern Conference, which puts them all but locked in to win the division, but they’ll be judged by how far they can get in in October (and November). It’s been a while since the Yankees seemed to be on the same level as the Houston Astros (another AL powerhouse this year) in that regard. Donaldson’s unlikely win doesn’t change that, but it does It did turn out to be a possible defeat to win and give the struggling Yankees a much-needed exciting moment. Having avoided being swept by the Rays, the Yankees will now host the Toronto Blue Jays in four games and then take on the crosstown Mets in two games. As far as any momentum exists in a sport like baseball, the Yankees will try to grab it when the September stretch looms.