Jordan Montgomery gave up just two hits and two walks Saturday against the Rays. All of them came back to hurt him.
The southpaw gave the Yankees a chance to win the game, but fell victim to the long ball in a 6-3 loss at Yankee Stadium.
The two hits Montgomery allowed over six-plus innings were both home runs. He only walked two batters, but one came home to score and the other led off the seventh inning before Montgomery’s day ended in frustrating fashion. In all, four runs were charged to him.
“I thought he threw the ball well,” manager Aaron Boone said. “Obviously two mistakes that cost him with the long ball. But overall, I thought he was six strong [innings]. I thought his secondary [stuff] was good. His fastball and cutter both were playing. He was in command of the game. Six strong innings, manageable pitch count, was striking guys out. I thought he threw the ball really well.”
Montgomery had given up a pair of home runs in his last start, also against the Rays, which resulted in a no-decision after he was charged with four runs in five innings. The Yankees eventually won that game last Sunday at Tropicana Field.
The left-hander pitched better on Saturday in the rematch, but was tagged with the loss.
“It’s not great,” Montgomery said. “But I gave us a chance to win, so that’s all I can do.”
Both of the home runs Montgomery allowed came on 0-0 counts. The first came in the second inning, when Rays catcher Francisco Mejia slapped a solo home run to the short porch in right field for the 1-0 lead.
After the Yankees tied it up in the bottom of the second, Montgomery walked Austin Meadows on four pitches in the fourth inning. With two outs, however, Manuel Margot took him deep with a two-run shot into the Rays bullpen.
“Just 0-0, trying to be aggressive, throwing strikes,” Montgomery said. “They got a barrel on it.”
Montgomery offered length for a rotation that has lacked it recently besides Gerrit Cole, working into the seventh inning to help spell the bullpen for a day.
“I’m always trying to go deep and take some pressure off other guys,” Montgomery said.