Ivan Nova was terrific, but it could not have mattered less. The Yankees ninth shutout loss of the year was a hard-to-swallow 1-0 letdown against the Rays. The Yankees had just two hits — a single by Lyle Overbay and a double by Brett Gardner — and were completely unable to take advantage of Nova’s continued resurgence. Having been demoted earlier this year, Nova allowed one run and struck out eight through seven innings. He pitched in and out of trouble several times and has pitched at least seven innings without allowing more than three runs in each of his past four starts. Make no mistake, Rays starter Chris Archer has been terrific this season. This was actually his second complete game shutout of the month, and he’s emerging as a sort of unexpected Rookie of the Year candidate. But even so, the Yankees have now gone nine straight games without a home run, their longest such drought since a 10-game streak in 1984. For a while now it’s been clear that this isn’t about tipping a cap to the pitcher; it’s about a diminished lineup that seems overwhelmed on a regular basis. Today was no different.
Associated Press photo