This was another game when attention focused on the Yankees’ offense and bullpen, though not for what had become familiar positive reasons.
In 11 innings Saturday, the Yankees could muster just one run, and that came on a wild pitch. The lack of an extra-base hit was a reminder, despite all the good team results, that Didi Gregorius, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton are absent and missed.
The bullpen, which has mostly been an iron curtain for the last month, was dented by solo homers from Brandon Lowe off Tommy Kahnle to tie the score in the seventh and Austin Meadows off Luis Cessa in the 11th. Those homers represented the only times that Rays reached third base. It was enough in a 2-1 victory.
If you thought much about Yankees starting pitching, it was out of concern. The hardest hit ball of this game was a 111.3 mph tracer by Yandy Diaz off of the right shin area of Masahiro Tanaka.
The good news: The ball caromed directly to Luke Voit, who stepped on first, and since there was a runner on second, it ended the sixth inning and preserved a shutout. The bad news was it left a bruise that puts Tanaka’s next start in some peril.