New York Yankees $155 million pitcher Masahiro Tanaka pitched well in going 6 and 1/3 winnings in leading the Yankees to a 3-2 victory over the LA Angels on Sunday at Yankees Stadium. Tanaka was pulled in the 7th inning with the Yankees down 2-1. In the bottom of the 7th inning, Yankees 1st baseman Mark Teixeira hit a solo homer off of Angels starting pitcher Garrett Richards to tie the game at 2-2. In the 8th inning, the Yankees got the winning run by Jacoby Ellbury on a wild pitch by Angels relief pitcher Nick Maronde.
Tanaka struck out 11 batters in a little over 6 innings with 4 walks, 2 home run, 5 hits and 2 earned runs. Tanaka didn’t get the victory unfortunately, so his record stays at 3-0 with an ERA of 2.27. Tanaka hasn’t lost a game since the 2012 season while playing in Japan. Last season, he was 24-0 in Japan.
It’s going to be interesting to see how long Tanaka can go before he suffers his first loss of the season. The way that Sunday’s game was going, he very easily could have lost that game had the Yankees not been able to come back to win the game. Tanaka didn’t get much support from the Yankees hitters, as they only got 3 hits in the game off of the Angels pitchers.
It’s kind of rare for a team to win a game when they only get 3 hits. It’s been done before, but it’s still quite rare. For Tanaka to be able to go through the season with an unbeaten record like he did last year, he’s going to need to pitch nearly perfect each time he goes out to the mound, because the Yankees hitters are pretty terrible. In last night’s lineup, the Yankees had 2 hitters – Ichiro Suzuki and Jacob Ellsbury – with a batting average of .300 and better. The remaining 7 hitters were all batting in the .200 range. I don’t care how good Tanaka is, if the Yankees can’t get better hitting from their lineup, then it’s unlikely that Tanaka will continue to win for long.