Bronx, NY- Elvin Rodriguez in his third career start with the Detroit Tigers met the Yankees Friday night in the Bronx. The 24-year old Right hander from San Cristobal, Dominican Republic was not in a talking mood and declined to speak with media after The Yankees hit three of their classic four home runs off Rodriguez and won their fourth straight game ,13-0.
Then again. Rodriguez is not the only pitcher throwing home run balls to the Yankees who continue to hit one home run after another at home. The Yankees continue to lead baseball in home runs and increased their Major League best record to 37-15.
So Rodriguez was not effective and Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said the rookie can only get better after this brief and third start of his career. Last Sunday, against the Indians, Rodriguez cruised through four shutout innings with four strikeouts and left the mound with body cramps.
But the Yankees gave him more cramps as they put on a home run clinic. Rodrguez gave up home runs to Jose Trevino, Anthony Rizzo, and Matt Carpenter and was charged with 10 runs, 11 hits, two walks, with four strikeouts on 88 pitches in 4.1 innings.
It was also the most hits surrendered by a Tigers pitcher this season. Gerrit Cole continued to cruise along and was perfect through 6.2 innings for the Yankees.
“I haven’t been here very long, but it seems like every night we’re flirting with a no-hitter,” Carpenter said. He is the only Yankee to hit a home run in four of his first five hits with the team.
The Yankees are the first team in the expansion era with two consecutive starters vying for perfect game bids of six or more innings. Thursday evening, Jameson Tallon tossed 7.0 perfect innings as the Yankees completed a three-game sweep over the Angels.
But all is not lost with Rodriquez. He made his big league debut out of spring training and in his first career start on April 10 pitched 2.2 innings in relief against the White Sox. He posted a 2-1 record and 3.57 ERA with Triple A Toledo this season, and was acquired by the Tigers as a player to be named later in the trade that sent Justin Upton to the Astros in 2017.
“He’s going to have a long career,” Tigers’ catcher Tucker Barnhart said about Rodriguez. “He’s going to be pitching in Yankee Stadium quite a few more times, and I’m sure he’ll look back on this as a growing moment in his career. His next start is big. We’re going to do everything we can to prepare him.”
This will continue to be a learning process for the young hurler. Hinch said there will be more opportunities and this was one of those outings that did ot work to plan. The Yankees feasted on every pitch.
“It got ugly fast,” he said. “They were hitting the ball out of the ballpark. They were piecing together at bats. Any pitch he didn’t execute , such as the second time through, third time through. I hate for it to end that way for him, but sometimes it’s necessary the way we used our bullpen,”
And for Elvis Rodriguez a start he will forget as he prepares for another one in five days. It’s baseball and it happens to the best.
Rich Mancuso is a senior writer @ Latinosports.com Twitter@Ring786 Facebook.com/Rich Mancuso Watch Sports With Rich live Tuesday evenings 10:pm ET with Robert Rizzo. YouTube on the SLG Network. Like, Comment, Subscribe.
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