Non-Challenge Haunts Girardi, Yankees in Heartbreaking Game 2 Loss
The Yankees were in control in Game 2 of their American League Division Series. An 8-3 lead with two strikes and two outs in the sixth.
With two runners on and an 0-2 count, Yankee reliever Chad Green threw a pitch up-and-in which was ruled to have hit Cleveland's Lonnie Chisenhall. Replays showed it probably didn't. Yankees manager Joe Girardi will long regret the decision not to have the umpires take a second look.
With the bases now loaded and Greene still on the hill, Francisco Lindor stepped to the plate to deliver a game-tightening grand slam to cut the Indian's deficit to 8-7.
You know what happened from there. Jay Bruce doomed the Yankees again, tying it with a solo homer off David Robertson in the eighth, then Yan Gomes won with a walk-off-hit in the 13th.
The Yankees weren't favored to beat to Cleveland, but now sit an 0-2 knowing they were a probably phantom hit-by-pitch away from heading home at 1-1 in the best of five series. They built a five-run lead in Game 2 by hammering this year's favorite for the American League Cy Young Award. The Yankees had knocked out Corey Kluber in the third-inning, highlighted by a two-run blast from Gary Sanchez and a three-run-shot from Aaron Hicks. But somehow they didn't come away with the win.
And, there is plenty of criticism blame being placed on the Yankees manager, not just for the non-challenge but also for yank-ing starter C.C. Sabathia after 77 pitches.
Incredibly, Yankees reliever Aroldis Chapman went so far as to 'like' an Instagram post from a fan who hoped Girardi's contract 'is not renewed after the season. He's a complete imbecile', Sports Illustrated reported.