One-and-done might be the best way to describe the team’s offense against Rays starting pitcher Alex Cobb. The right-hander yielded six hits -- all singles -- over 7 1/3 innings, but the Yankees could never muster more than one hit in any one inning off him.
That was the extent of the Yankees’ offense.
Not only that, but against Cobb the Yankees managed to get a runner past first base only once. That was in the fourth inning, when Derek Jeter led off with a single before going to second on a wild pitch. He was stranded there after Jacoby Ellsbury struck out looking, Mark Teixeira struck out swinging and Carlos Beltran grounded harmlessly to second.
The loss pushed the Yankees’ losing streak to five games. During that stretch they’ve scored only seven runs while surrendering 28.
The only serious threat the Yankees mounted came in the eighth, when they loaded the bases with one out. But Rays reliever Brad Boxberger got both Ellsbury and Teixeira to strike out.
In all, the Yankees struck out 12 times. It was also the second time they’ve been shut out in the past five games.
A Shortstop Out Of Water: While he has performed admirably enough at a position he’s never played in the major leagues, there are still those times when Stephen Drew reminds you that he’s really a shortstop and not an experienced second baseman.
That became evident not once, not twice, but three times in the first two innings against the Rays. After Tampa Bay loaded the bases in the first, thanks to two singles and a walk to start the inning, the Yankees had a chance to minimize potential damage when cleanup hitter Evan Longoria grounded to third baseman Chase Headley, who threw to Drew at second. It looked to be the start of a double play, but Drew double-clutched while pivoting, losing precious time before throwing poorly to first. Longoria was safe, and a run scored.
The next batter, James Loney, bounced into what appeared to be a textbook 4-6-3 double play. But Drew bobbled the ball on the exchange, and was able to get only the forceout at second, while another run scored.
An inning later, Drew botched a grounder off the bat of Kevin Kiermaier. The error caused no damage, but it was an error nonetheless.
Pounding The Strike Zone: Tampa Bay starter Alex Cobb opened the game with six straight strikes to Brett Gardner and Derek Jeter, striking both batters out on three straight pitches. Gardner went down looking, while Jeter went down swinging. Cobb fired another strike to Jacoby Ellsbury, making it seven straight strikes, before throwing his first ball of the game. Cobb got Ellsbury to bounce a one-hopper back to him on a 2-2 count for the third out of the inning. It proved to be a precursor to how Cobb pounded the strike zone all night, striking out eight Yanks before exiting the game with one out in the eighth.
E In 63: It was a nice streak while it lasted, impressive even, stretching back to his days as a San Diego Padre. But after 62 error-less games at third base, Chase Headley booted a grounder. It came in the seventh inning, off the bat of Logan Forsythe, a hard grounder that ate up Headley. Headley had the second-longest active streak in the majors, trailing only San Francisco’s Pablo Sandoval, who entered Friday with 67 error-less games. Headley, who has impressed with his defensive wizardry and reflexes, once had a 67-game error-less streak that spanned the 2012 and 2013 seasons.
E's At The Corners: Headley’s error at third base to start the seventh inning was exacerbated by another normally sure-handed defender -- first baseman Mark Teixeira. Three one-out singles scored a run and loaded the bases for Tampa Bay, but the Yankees looked as if they would escape the inning with minimal damage when Ben Zobrist grounded to Teixeira in what appeared to have all the makings of a 3-2-3 double play. But Teixeira booted the grounder. The ball skittered toward Drew at second, who threw it to first for an out, while a run scored.
Multi-Jeter: When Jeter lined a single to right in the eighth inning, it marked the 32nd time this season that he’s had a multihit game, second most on the team behind Jacoby Ellsbury’s 36 multihit games.