Luis Gil strikes out career-best nine hitters in Yankees' 5-4 win over Rays

The Yankees held on for a 5-4 win over the Tampa Bay Rays on Sunday afternoon at Yankee Stadium.

Here are some key takeaways…

– Luis Gil showcased some nasty stuff early, striking out seven Rays through the first three innings while pinpointing his fastball on the black and mixing in a wicked changeup. But as unhittable as his stuff looked, Gil got himself in trouble in the third. After allowing a leadoff double, Gil threw a pickoff attempt into center field and then balked to allowed Jose Caballero to score and tie the game.

But besides that third-inning blemish, Gil was fantastic on Sunday afternoon. He went 5.2 innings, allowing just one unearned run on two hits while striking out a career-best nine hitters. He walked three, and it was back-to-back walks in the sixth that saw him leave to a standing ovation.

– Something to keep an eye on, Gleyber Torres fouled a ball off of his left foot in the bottom of the first inning. He immediately hobbled around and pit and went down on all fours as the training staff came out to check on him.

Torres stayed in the game and went 1-for-3 with a run scored, but DJ LeMahieu’s extended IL stint is proof that something like this could have big ramifications.

– The Yankees took a first-inning lead on an Anthony Rizzo two-out, two-on single, and while they had plenty of men on base against Rays starter Aaron Civale, they couldn’t quite break through. Even when it looked like Alex Verdugo was going to drive in a pair with an extra-base hit in the third, Randy Arozarena tracked it down and made an over-the-shoulder catch to end the inning.

But Verdugo would have his revenge in the fifth. With the bases loaded and two outs, this time Verdugo was able to find some grass in the outfield, and his single drove in two to give the Yankees a 3-1 lead. Jose Trevino and Oswaldo Cabrera followed up with soft singles to center, and just like that, the Bombers were up 5-1.

– Aaron Judge had struck out in six straight at-bats before lining a single to third base in the bottom of the third. After striking out four times and getting booed by the Yankee Stadium crowd on Saturday, Judge went 1-for-4 with two more strikeouts.

– Dennis Santana had an adventurous eighth inning, allowing three runs on three hits and a walk, but Victor Gonzalez was able to close things out in the ninth, giving the Yankees a series win.

Who was the MVP?

Gil was the star on the mound, and while Verdugo had a three-hit day, we’ll give the nod to Gil’s sensation day on the bump.


Next up

The Yankees stay home for a four-game series against the Oakland Athletics, starting on Monday afternoon at 1:05 p.m.

Carlos Rodon will face former Yankees prospect JP Sears.

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