Montgomery, who had 5.11 ERA in first season back from Tommy John surgery, allowed four runs, five hits and two walks in just two-thirds of an inning in his start against Tampa Bay, a 5-2 loss on Sept 2. He gave hits to his first five batters, including a pair of two-run homers.
It’s hardly the ideal way for the Bronx Bombers to begin an elimination game, but not much else has worked on the mound since ace Gerrit Cole pitched Game 1.
Although the Yankees were squarely in the middle of the pack in many regular season pitching stats, one problem stood out: No playoff team gave up more than the 83 homers surrendered by New York’s pitchers.
The Rays smacked four homers in Game 2 to overcome Giancarlo Stanton’s two homers for New York, and their 13-hit, three-homer attack in Game 3 was more than enough to overcome Stanton’s latest milestone blast in the eighth inning.
After García went only one inning to open Game 2 on Tuesday and was replaced by an ineffective J.A. Happ, who admitted he would have preferred to start, the Yankees were counting on a big, preferably lengthy start in Game 3 from Tanaka.
The Japanese veteran had been a strong contributor to previous Yankees postseason campaigns, but he hasn’t had it in his final playoff run before free agency.
Tanaka got tagged for six runs and five hits in four innings last week in his first game of this postseason, although that happened during a rainstorm in Cleveland.