Just six hours ago, Joe Girardi was defiant about the Yankees being still in the race. “Darn right we are!” he said. It’s hard to be so defiant now. After a 7-0 shutout loss to the Rays — and a Jason Giambi walkoff win for the Indians — the Yankees are quite literally on the verge of elimination. Five games out with five to play, the next Yankees loss or Indians win will officially wipe out any hope of advancing to the postseason. The Yankees have now lost seven of their past 10, and Hiroki Kuroda is 0-6 with a 6.56 ERA in his past eight starts. Tonight, Kuroda gave the Rays a lead from the very beginning. He allowed a leadoff home run to the first batter of the night, and the Indians went on to score three runs in the first inning then two more in the sixth. The Yankees, meanwhile, were unable to cash in on scoring opportunities in the third (bases loaded with one out), fourth (two on, one out) or seventh (leadoff double) and went down meekly, getting just four hits and going 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position.
Associated Press photo