by Ray Kuhn
There is nothing like a full day of baseball action. For the most part, there weren’t many top of the rotation options taking the mound. However, that didn’t mean the day was devoid of quality pitching performances. And at the risk of overkill, yes, Gary Sanchez did hit another home run today. Let’s take a look at some of the other performances that stood out from jammed packed slate of games.
1) Masahiro Tanaka turns in a Gem
Despite the fact that they were sellers a few weeks ago, the Yankees are still very much in the playoff picture. For those hopes to turn into a reality, they need Tanaka to pitch like the ace he is capable of being. On Wednesday, that was the case for the right-hander who picked up his 11th victory of the season. What we must note though, is that yesterday’s outing came on five days of rest for Tanaka which has proved to be the ticket to his success this season. Tanaka threw seven shutout innings and limited the Mariners to just six hits and one walk while striking out five. That brought Tanaka’s ERA for the season down to 3.11 to go along with a 1.07 WHIP. As long as the Yankees’ manage his rest for the duration of the season, you should be able to count on the right-hander. However, there are two red flags. Tanaka has seen his ground ball rate drop by 8.7% from the first half to the second half with a corresponding increase to his fly ball rate, and his hard contact has risen from 33.2% to 36.2% (per Fangraphs). Read more