NEW YORK – Detroit Tigers right-hander Beau Brieske stood on the mound Saturday afternoon at Yankee Stadium, less than 24 hours after the New York Yankees rocked fellow rookie righty Elvin Rodriguez for a whopping 10 runs in the series opener.
Brieske pitched better than expectations. The 24-year-old held the red-hot Yankees to two runs over six innings and racked up a career-high seven strikeouts.
Two home runs from the Bronx Bombers made the difference.
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The Yankees won again, 3-0, in the second of three games; the Tigers haven’t scored since the eighth inning of Thursday’s 3-2 win over the Minnesota Twins at Comerica Park.
The Tigers (21-32) have managed a woeful four hits in New York, along with an 18 inning scoreless streak. In Friday’s game, Yankees ace Gerrit Cole took a perfect game into the seventh inning.
On Saturday, Yankees right-hander Luis Severino tossed seven scoreless innings, conceding just one hit and one walk with 10 strikeouts. Two righty relievers, Michael King and Clay Holmes, chipped in the final two scoreless frames.
The Tigers’ lone hit came on a hard-hit single from Miguel Cabrera to open the second inning. Their only other base runner, Derek Hill, drew a six-pitch walk with one out in the third.
Javier Baez, down to hitting .190 in 42 games, finished 0-for-3 with three strikeouts. Cabrera, hitting .288 in 45 games, went 1-for-3 with two strikeouts. Leadoff hitter Willi Castro also struck out twice.
Pinch-hitter Spencer Torkelson struck out swinging for the second out in the ninth inning.
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Here comes the Judge
New York’s offense grabbed a 1-0 advantage on the first pitch.
Leading off for the Yankees, Aaron Judge crushed a home run to right-center on Brieske’s first-pitch 95.3 mph four-seam fastball in the first inning. His first career leadoff blast traveled 378 feet.
Judge, the American League Player of the Month in May, has 21 home runs in 51 games this season. The Tigers, as a team, have 30 home runs in 53 games, led by Jonathan Schoop and Jeimer Candelario with five each.
The Yankees averaged a 100.5 mph exit velocity against Brieske — not a good sign — but the developing pitcher adjusted from the onset of the second. He didn’t shy away from using his slider — a work in progress — to keep his opponents from sitting on his fastball and changeup.
Brieske, who conceded three hits and one walk, posted zeros on the scoreboard in the second, third, fourth and fifth innings, before Anthony Rizzo tacked on the Yankees’ second run with two outs in the sixth.
He hammered Brieske’s first-pitch slider for a solo home run, traveling 387 feet to right field.
Rizzo, who re-signed with the Yankees in the offseason after being acquired from the Cubs at the 2021 trade deadline, boasts 13 homers in 52 games this season.
For his 83 pitches (52 strikes), Brieske tossed 33 four-seam fastballs (41%), 26 sliders (33%), 15 changeups (19%), four sinkers (5%) and two curveballs (3%). He generated 11 swings and misses, including three each with his slider and changeup.
Entering Saturday’s start, Brieske had thrown four-seamers 54.2% of the time, changeups 23.6% and sliders 15.4%. He has given up 12 home runs across 42 innings in eight starts.
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trouble in the eighth
Replacing Brieske, right-handed reliever Jason Foley pitched a scoreless seventh inning.
The trouble began in the eighth, when righty Joe Jiménez let the first three batters reach safely: Kyle Higashioka (walk), Aaron Hicks (single) and Judge (walk). Josh Donaldson then delivered a sacrifice fly for a 3-0 Yankees lead.
To counter Rizzo, a left-handed hitter, the Tigers called left-handed reliever Andrew Chafin out of the bullpen with two runners in scoring position. Chafin struck out Rizzo swinging with a slider. Stanton then lined out to end the inning.
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This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Detroit Tigers held to one hit by Luis Severino in 3-0 loss to Yankees