The High-A Tampa Yankees were coming off of two straight walk-off losses in Bradenton, as a tired bullpen wasn’t quite able to get it done either nights. Sunday, the Yankees looked to end the streak with Ian Clarkin on the mound who has been solid for Tampa so far this season. They went into Sunday’s game holding an 8-7 record, despite starting the second half 8-3.
Ian Clarkin went five innings, giving up only two earned runs, three runs total, and recorded one strikeout. Bradenton was able to work with small ball off of Clarkin, as he didn’t allow any extra-base-hits in his five innings of work. Two runs would come off of RBI singles, and the third a sac-grounder from a double play. Tampa had their offense to counter Bradenton’s three runs, Austin Aune with his second home-run, a two-run bomb to give Tampa the lead in the second inning. In the fifth inning, after Keith Skinner and Jeff Hendrix both got on base from walks, Gosuke Katoh gave Tampa a two-run lead with a deep single to center, scoring both the runners after a fielding error by the center-fielder. After the error, Katoh would try to make it into an inside-the-park home-run, but he’d be called out at home. Caleb Frare came in after Clarkin and gave the Yankees two innings, but he’d give up four hits and two runs in the process, which would eventually earn him the loss on the day.
The Yankees had six at-bats to tie the game, but once again would fall short. It’d be the fifth straight loss, third straight loss to Bradenton, and third straight loss by only one run. Gosuke Katoh’s 2-4 game would send his average back up to .264, only three other players would have a hit, though Trey Amburgey had two walks in the game. Tomorrow, Tampa will try and avoid the sweep with Bryan Mitchell on the mound. Mitchell was sent to Tampa to keep getting work throughout the All-Star Break for the MLB.