The pitching matchup lived up to expectations, seeing a pair of multiple-time Cy Young Award winners lug their hardware to the Yankee Stadium mound on an afternoon in which runs projected to be at a premium. Corey Kluber held his own, but Max Scherzer proved to be nearly unhittable.
The Yankees waved often, striking out 14 times against Scherzer, but they were also waiting for an opportunity to pounce. Gleyber Torres notched a game-tying RBI single in the ninth, Mike Ford re-tied the game in the 10th and Torres tapped home the winning run in the 11th to lift the Yankees to a 4-3 victory on Saturday — their first walk-off win of the year.
Brad Hand blew a pair of save chances in two innings, allowing Torres’ run-scoring hit in the ninth and Ford’s RBI single in the 10th, snapping a 1-for-23 skid. Torres’ bases-loaded hit off Tanner Rainey scored the winner after the Yanks overcame Trea Turner’s 10th inning sac fly, the first run that Aroldis Chapman has allowed this season — albeit unearned, placed by the automatic-runner rule.
New York’s comeback followed a magnificent performance during which Scherzer set a record for strikeouts by a visiting pitcher at the current Yankee Stadium. Scherzer struck out six of the first seven before Kyle Higashioka slugged a solo home run into the left-field seats. Scherzer shrugged off the blow and went back to work, permitting only one runner until the eighth, retiring 13 consecutive batters.
Coming off two stellar starts that earned selection as the American League’s Player of the Week, Kluber held the Nationals to two runs over 5 2/3 innings, navigating heavy traffic on the basepaths. Juan Soto worked a bases-loaded walk in the third and Starlin Castro singled home a run in the sixth off Kluber, who scattered six hits and three walks, striking out six.
Kyle leads sports coverage and hosts the Concrete Jungle podcast. Have a lead or question? Send it to [email protected].