Jordan Montgomery got up off the ground after getting hit hard by a come-backer, but the Bombers couldn’t get themselves back up off the mat Sunday night. The Red Sox rallied to beat the Yankees 4-3 and avoid a sweep at the Stadium.
“It just kind of was in a weird spot and then it caught me right on the bone. So it sounded pretty loud, but got up and walked it off,” Montgomery said. “I’ll be ready in five days. I’ll walk it off.” That’s the kind of “bounce back’’ the Yankees need with the high-powered Blue Jays coming into the Stadium on Monday night. And still, taking their first two games and winning the first series of the season, particularly against an American League East division rival, is definitely starting out 2022 on the right foot.
“If you’re gonna win the East and be a playoff team, there’s got to be some consistency of what you’re doing. Whether it’s a 100-win season or a playoff type season, regardless, you’re gonna go through your lumps and your bumps along the way. So every win is precious. Of course you want it to be that you get off to a great start because I think there’s something about that, that can be settling as a team and for individuals,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “When individuals get off to a good start, you kind of get into the flow of the season a little bit easier without guys kind of pressing to do more than they need to.”
“We’ve been in every situation we’ve got off to slow starts and still went on to win 100 games. Last year, of course, we’re up against it the final two and a half months and really caught fire,” Boone said. “So we want to be as consistent as we can be. Of course, hopefully that means a great start, but you know, we’re not going to be affected one way or the other. We’re going to come in expecting to do special things and do great things, but we’re not going to be swayed by a great win or a tough loss.”
Anthony Rizzo certainly won’t be pressing.
He’s 3-for-10 with two homers and six RBI in three games. The Yankees, who hit strikes hard but had little to show for it, can take comfort in that and the fact that they started the season winning a series against a division rival.
Rizzo, who had an RBI in each of his fist six games after being acquired by the Yankees in a trade last July, has started this season with two RBI in his first three games of this season.
Friday and Saturday he did it with power, homering in the first two games of the season. Sunday night it was a two-run single in the fourth inning that tied the game.
Montgomery is the first Yankee starter so far this season to not give up a home run. He still allowed three earned runs on four hits. He walked one and struck out four. The lefty got through 3.1 innings, throwing 58 pitches, 38 for strikes. That he got through 3.1 innings was a win for the Yankees after he went down dramatically in the first inning as Xander Bogaerts’ come-backer, 103 miles per hour off the bat, hit him in the back of his left, lower leg. Montgomery was on the ground for several minutes before he got back up and was able to continue pitching.
“It was a pretty gutsy effort to kind of walk it off, shake it off,” Boone said. “So glad we’re able to get X rays and negative and everything so we’ll see in the morning. I’m sure he’s gonna be pretty stiff. He’s pretty stiff already right now, but a gutsy effort.”[More Yankees] Isiah Kiner-Falefa finally collects first hit as a Yankee »
That spared a bullpen that had already been stretched out this season. In the first two games, the bullpen threw 13 innings allowing one earned run.
Clarke Schmidt gave the Yankees 2.2 solid innings, despite giving up the go-ahead home run to Dalbec in the top of the sixth.
Josh Donaldson struck out three times looking for the first time in his career and then singled with one out in the sixth inning. Isiah Kiner-Falefa, who began his Yankee career going 0-for-8, got his first hit in pinstripes with a leadoff double in the fourth. He and Jose Trevino, making his first start behind the plate for the Yankees, scored on Rizzo’s single.