Yankees suffer first series loss as Carlos Rodon forced to labor on mound

Yankees pitcher Carlos Rodon is in action against the Blue Jays in Toronto on April 16, 2024.

Table of Contents

The New York Yankees faced a sobering reality check in their recent series against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. After a promising start to the season, the Yankees suffered their first series loss, dropping the finale by a score of 5-4. This defeat marked their third consecutive setback, raising concerns about their overall performance.

Starting pitcher Carlos Rodon had a challenging outing, lasting only four innings while throwing a staggering 101 pitches. His struggles further taxed an already overworked bullpen. Compounding the team’s woes, a crucial defensive miscue by Gleyber Torres proved costly for the Yankees.

Meanwhile, the Blue Jays’ pitching staff stifled the Yankees’ offense. Yusei Kikuchi, Toronto’s left-handed hurler, followed up Chris Bassitt’s impressive outing from the previous day by limiting the Yankees to just one run over six innings of work.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone acknowledged his team’s shortcomings, giving credit to the Blue Jays for their all-around excellence. He praised their sharp defensive plays in the outfield and Kikuchi’s dominance on the mound. Additionally, Boone commended the Blue Jays’ hitters for their relentless approach at the plate, forcing the Yankees’ pitchers to grind throughout the game.

Despite facing a daunting 5-1 deficit after Kikuchi’s departure, the Yankees showed resilience in the late innings. A rally sparked by Gleyber Torres and Alex Verdugo resulted in two runs, narrowing the gap to 5-3.

They added another run in the ninth inning against closer Jordan Romano, bringing the score to 5-4. However, their comeback bid fell short as Oswaldo Cabrera grounded out with the tying run on third base.

Even in the face of defeat, Aaron Judge emphasized the team’s competitive spirit, highlighting their ability to battle until the final out. Despite going hitless with two strikeouts himself, Judge acknowledged the strength of the Blue Jays’ pitching staff. He called for offensive consistency from his teammates, urging them to maintain their approach and support each other through this challenging stretch.

Yankees’ Carlos Rodon forced to work


Mirroring Luis Gil‘s frustrations from the previous day, Carlos Rodon found himself entangled in a battle against the formidable Toronto lineup. Although he managed to limit the damage, it was a demanding outing right from the start. The left-hander required a hefty 32 pitches to navigate the first inning, with a prolonged at-bat by Bo Bichette culminating in a walk.

In the aftermath of the game, Rodon acknowledged the quality of the Blue Jays’ at-bats, conceding that they forced him to work for every out. “It was a grind out there,” he admitted. Despite entering the contest with confidence in his pitching abilities, Rodon expressed a desire for a sharper performance, crediting the Blue Jays’ hitters for their disciplined approach at the plate.

Pitching to his new battery mate, Jose Trevino, for the first time in a major league game, Rodon needed a staggering 101 pitches to navigate just four innings. He surrendered three earned runs, walked four batters, and struck out five. These struggles caused his ERA to escalate from a respectable 2.87 to 3.66.

Manager Aaron Boone echoed Rodon’s sentiment regarding the walks, adding that a steady stream of foul balls also disrupted the pitcher’s rhythm. Boone observed that the Blue Jays simply wore down Rodon, acknowledging their offensive prowess. Even though Rodon believed he executed many quality pitches, the Toronto hitters consistently battled them off.

Looking ahead, Rodon focused on areas for improvement. He emphasized the need to be more effective with his secondary pitches and work on maintaining better command to throw more strikes, ultimately enabling him to pitch deeper into games.

Blue Jays offense took Rodon to task in Toronto


The game began to unravel for Rodon in the pivotal third inning. Facing a bases-loaded jam with no outs, He managed to limit the damage, but only to a sacrifice fly by Justin Turner that knotted the score. However, this came at a significant cost, as Rodon’s pitch count skyrocketed to a demanding 72 by the end of the frame.

Toronto continued to apply relentless pressure in the fourth inning. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. delivered an RBI single, extending the Blue Jays’ lead. Rodon surrendered two additional runs that inning, putting the Yankees in a deeper hole.

The Blue Jays’ offensive onslaught was not yet over. Capitalizing on a fielding error by Gleyber Torres in the sixth inning, where Torres misplayed a stolen base attempt, and a timely base hit by Bo Bichette, Toronto plated two more runs. Manager Aaron Boone acknowledged Torres’ miscue, stating that the young infielder failed to secure the ball during the stolen base attempt.

While Rodon battled through a challenging outing, Yusei Kikuchi proved to be an insurmountable obstacle for the Yankees’ offense. The Blue Jays’ left-hander had already stifled the Yankees once this season, pitching a complete-game shutout with seven strikeouts on April 5th. Kikuchi’s dominance continued in this game, keeping the Yankees’ bats quiet. Aaron Judge, who is currently batting a meager .182 after going hitless in this contest, credited Kikuchi’s effectiveness to his ability to utilize his entire pitching arsenal, keeping the Yankees’ hitters off balance and unable to adjust.

What do you think? leave your comment below.

Related posts:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Join the Pinstripes Nation!

Your Daily Dose of Yankees Magic Delivered to Your Inbox

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Don't Miss Any of the Latest Yankees News, Rumors, and Exclusive Offers!