The New York Yankees have dominated the 2022 MLB season. Armed with the best lineup in baseball, a dominant starting pitching staff and a fearsome bullpen, the Yankees entered the game on Saturday 52-19, the best record in baseball.
But on Saturday, the mighty Yankees met their side. The Houston Astros dominantly overthrew the juggernaut Yankees, throwing a combined no-hitter against the Evil Empire.
Astros starter Cristian Javier led the charge against the Yankees. Starting the year in the bullpen, Javier hampered the Yankees at almost every opportunity. Two runners reached base against Javier during his impressive outing. Josh Donaldson walked Javier in the first, then reached on a throwing error in the seventh.
Other than that, Javier, 25, was in complete control. He hit a career-high 13 Yankees over seven no-hit innings. Yankees hitters looked uncomfortable hitting Javier the entire game. Giancarlo Stanton personified the team’s battle, striking out in all three at bats against Javier. Despite seeing Javier multiple times, Stanton still took ugly blows to Javier the third time the two faced each other.
The only thing that kept Javier from riding all the way was his number of pitches. Javier was on 91 pitches after the sixth inning and would have needed some quick innings to make it to the ninth. The Yankees forced Javier to some deep counts in the seventh inning, pushing him past his previous career-high in pitches thrown in a game. Astros manager Dusty Baker showed confidence in Javier and let him in to finish the inning.
That decision has worked. It took 24 pitches, but Javier struckout three batters in his last at bat. He was hugged by Baker in the dugout, a sign that Javier’s day was over. He threw 115 pitches high in his career in the best start of his young career.
Powered by solo home runs from JJ Matijevic and Jose Altuve, the Astros led the game 2-0 when Javier was drawn.
Astros Bullpen Completes No-Hitter After Cristian Javier Is Drawn
The Yankees showed signs of life immediately after Javier left the game. Hector Neris came in to replace Javier and immediately walked the first batter he faced. With Aaron Hicks in first, Matt Carpenter flew deep into left field. Neris walked again to put Joey Gallo at the plate with a chance to give the Yankees the lead.
Gallo had almost succeeded. He pulled a deep ball into right field, the shallowest part of Yankees Stadium. The ball fell inches before a home run and landed in Kyle Tucker’s glove with the outfielder in the warning lane.
Baker called on Ryan Pressly to take out the Yankees in the ninth. Pressly entered the game with a 10.61 ERA in nine appearances at Yankee Stadium. That fight didn’t affect Pressly on Saturday. He struckout Anthony Rizzo and Josh Donaldson to open up the ninth. That brought in Stanton, who grounded out to third base to secure the combined no-hitter. The Astros won the game 3-0.
The appearance marked the second time that the Astros threw a combined no-hitter against the Yankees. Houston’s first combined no-hitter against New York came in 2003. That game was the last time the Yankees had no hit prior to Saturday’s game.