Home News Carlos Rodón’s first-inning woes, Yankees’ struggles continue in loss to Rays

Carlos Rodón’s first-inning woes, Yankees’ struggles continue in loss to Rays

ST. PETERSBURG — Before taking the mound at Tropicana Field on Tuesday, Carlos Rodón had a 7.50 ERA in the first inning. That number didn’t go down in the Yankees’ 5-3 loss to the Rays.

Instead, Rodón spoiled an early 1-0 lead when Tampa Bay responded with four runs in the bottom of the first.

The Rays first plated a run when Randy Arozarena doubled down the left field line. Alex Verdugo was charged with an error on the play after bobbling the ball on the warning track, but the run was earned nonetheless.

So were the three that came from Isaac Paredes’ home run a few batters later. The third baseman drove a lower-middle fastball to left field, continuing Rodón’s struggles with the pitch.

Rodón, who keeps getting reminders that he needs to diversify his pitch mix, used his heater 48% of the time. His changeup ranked second at 27%, while his slider came in at a 14% clip.

The lefty threw his curveball 11% of the time and didn’t touch his cutter over the course of 95 pitches.

While Rodón did not allow another run after the first, he only lasted four innings while totaling five hits, two walks and five strikeouts. He has now allowed 15 first-inning runs in his last six starts. While Rodón didn’t allow any against the Reds his last time out, he’s surrendered 19 total first-inning runs this season.

Only Austin Gomber (23) and Griffin Canning (22) have permitted more, according to Stathead’s Katie Sharp.

Rodón’s poor opening contributed to the Yankees’ 17th loss in their last 23 games, but so did Ryan Pepiot’s evening.

The Rays’ righty rebounded nicely from a Gleyber Torres RBI single in the first, refusing to let the Yankees score again over 5.2 frames. Pepiot tallied four hits, three walks, seven strikeouts and 101 pitches.

The Yankees managed to cut the Rays’ lead to one when Ben Rice stayed hot with a two-run homer in the seventh. The rookie now has five dingers in 19 career games after leaving the yard three times on Saturday, but his Tuesday shot wasn’t enough to spark a Yankees win.

With the Rays benefiting from a Jonny DeLuca RBI double in the eighth, the Bombers fell to 13-17 against American League East rivals this season.

“We got a losing record, so not well enough,” Aaron Boone said of the Yankees’ divisional record before Tuesday’s game. “Hopefully, that’s something we can improve on moving forward.”

The Yankees also haven’t won seven straight series. That streak would continue with a loss on Wednesday.

Marcus Stroman will try to prevent that, as he’s scheduled to start for the Yanks. Zach Eflin will take the ball for Tampa.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here