ANAHEIM, Calif. — The only magic the Yankees roster has conjured up lately is making opposing starting pitchers untouchable.
Angels left-hander Patrick Sandoval is the best of the group the Yankees have faced on this road trip, which has been a recipe for disaster for Aaron Boone’s club.
The Yankees could barely touch Sandoval or the Angels’ bullpen, collecting just two hits all night in another paltry offensive effort that turned into a 5-1 loss Tuesday at Angel Stadium.
After suffering back-to-back extra-inning losses, the Yankees (50-46) spared themselves the punch Tuesday and are coming off a nine-inning dominance en route to their eighth loss in their last 10 games.
Sandoval went 7 ¹/₃ innings with seven strikeouts, giving up only a solo home run to Gleyber Torres in the third inning and a single to Anthony Volpe in the eighth.
He also walked three times, all in the first two innings, but the Yankees couldn’t capitalize.
The Angels (48-48) entered this series having lost 11 of their last 13 games, but the Yankees gave them a break.
Ahead of Sandoval, who entered Tuesday with a 4.41 ERA, it was Angels right-hander Griffin Canning (entering with a 4.62 ERA) on Monday who struck out 12 Yankees on 5 sq/₃ two-man ball innings. points.
And over the weekend in Denver, it was Rockies left-hander Austin Gomber (he entered with a 6.40 ERA) and right-hander Chase Anderson (he entered with a 6.89 ERA) who combined for 11 two-run innings against the Yankees.
The only starter on that trip the Yankees had success with was Rockies right-hander Connor Seabold, whom they scored for six runs in 2 ¹/₃ innings on Saturday.
Domingo German, meanwhile, wasn’t his best on Tuesday, giving up five runs in six innings, which for this iteration of the Yankees proved too much to overcome.
A night after the Yankees’ late lead was erased by Shohei Ohtani’s two-run homer — Boone defended his decision not to walk it intentionally, in part because Ohtani had a “really good” hitter behind him to Mickey Moniak – Moniak has lived up to the billing.
The Angels center back went 3 for 4 with a two-run homer and three RBIs.
Ohtani also hurt the Yankees again, ripping a missile low into the right field corner for an RBI triple that put the Angels up 4-1 in the fifth inning.
But what Ohtani’s Monday night speech also overshadowed was the fact that the Yankees couldn’t survive his two-point shot because they couldn’t score more than three points.
The Yankees fell behind early when German gave up a two-run homer to Moniak in the first inning.
Then, after the German retired the team in the second set, he got into trouble in the third. He ran through the bases loaded before hitting Moniak for the first out.
German then threw a wild pitch that scored the runner from third to make it 3-1, but escaped further damage by forcing Taylor Ward to fly to shallow left field and Mike Moustakas to retire .
German gave up two more runs in the fifth inning on a rally that started by brushing Zach Neto with a curveball before Ohtani ripped his RBI triple and Moniak netted an RBI single for the 5-1 lead.
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