CC Sabathia could have stopped giving up home runs after the third inning, with the total at three already, and it still wouldn’t have helped the Yankees.
That's how dominant opposing starter David Price was Friday night.
The Yankees didn't muster much offense against Price as Tampa Bay's lefty shut them down in the Rays' 5-1 win. Price gave up just six hits and one run over eight innings, while striking out four as he evened his record to 10-10.
"I thought he threw the ball well," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "It's not shocking, David Price has done this a number of times."
Coming into the night, the Yankees had been quite successful against Price this season. They had scored 11 runs and had 19 hits in 17 1/3 innings against the southpaw, resulting in Price having a 0-1 record and a 5.71 ERA against the Yankees.
In Price's last start, however, he had given up just two runs in 7 1/3 innings and he improved on that solid outing Friday.
While he gave up a leadoff single to Derek Jeter, he locked in after that at-bat and the Yankees didn't mount much pressure during the game. His lone mistake came on an RBI double he surrendered to Andruw Jones in the fourth inning.
The Yankees put runners into scoring position just three times and the Rays defense prevented the Yankees from getting any more. Nick Swisher got thrown out at home trying to slice the lead to 3-2 in the third inning and second baseman Sean Rodriguez started a slick double play in the eighth inning on a hard-hit ball by Jeter.
"He's one of the best pitchers in baseball," Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira said. "When he's hitting his spots, he's tough to beat."
The common theme after the game -- from both the Yankees hitters and Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon -- was that Price used his off-speed pitches to stymie the Yankees.
Swisher said Price used the off-speed pitches more compared to trying to blow his fastball by the hitters and third baseman Edurado Nunez said that Price had a great changeup.
Teixeira said Price's fastball was also working and his slider/cutter pitch made life tough for the Yankees hitters.
"When he can throw a lot of those, it's easy to get through eight innings like he did," Teixeira said.