The New York Yankees salvaged the final game of a three-game set against the Houston Astros behind a complete game shutout by Brandon McCarthy. The win raises his record to 5-2 as a member of the Yanks and gets them back in the win column after two disappointing losses.
The shutout was McCarthy’s ninth in his career and helps the Yankees out in multiple ways. Besides the very important win, the Yankees were able to rest their bullpen for a day. New York lost a tough game last night because the bullpen failed to back up a good start by Michael Pineda. Manager Joe Girardi was unable to use his top-tier relievers because they’ve been used so often this season. McCarthy’s complete game ensures that relievers Dellin Betances and David Robertson are rested for their upcoming series with the Chicago White Sox.
McCarthy’s win also adds to the many great performances from New York’s starting pitching staff since the All-Star break. There was so much talk about New York’s injury woes at the starting pitching position, but McCarthy and the rest of the replacements have done their part and then some. The ERA for New York’s starting pitching has been outstanding since the second half began.
Today’s game exemplifies what the Yankees need — solid starting pitching and timely hitting. The pitchers have held up their end of the bargain on most nights, but the offense has been atrocious. Today they only went 1-for-5 with runners in scoring position, but at least the one hit was a two-run double by Chase Headley.
After losing two out of three to the Astros, the margin of error shrinks even more. The Yankees got a big hit from Headley and a great start from McCarthy on a summer afternoon in the Bronx, but they need to start stringing wins together if they stand a chance at the second Wild Card spot.