The spiraling New York Yankees were shut out by the juggernaut Braves 5-0 on Tuesday night, and the loss dropped them to 60-60 on the season. That's the latest in a season that the Yankees have been .500 or worse since September of 1995.
Tuesday's game occasioned the latest round of struggles for Yankees right-hander Luis Severino. Severino allowed five runs (three earned) in four innings with five strikeouts, two walks, and two home runs allowed. His ERA for the season now stands at 7.98 in this, his walk year. Once again, the first inning was Severino's undoing. He allowed three runs in the first frame on Tuesday, and his first-inning ERA for the year is now 14.79. This marks the fourth straight outing in which Severino's runs allowed tally has exceed his innings pitched total.
Across the way, Bryce Elder and a pair of Atlanta relievers suffocated a Yankee lineup that has little going for it outside of reigning AL MVP Aaron Judge. The Yankees managed only one hit on the night – a second-inning single by DJ LeMahieu. Judge worked a pair of walks.
On the night, the Yankees had more fielding errors (two) than hits, and as Russ Gardiner notes, they became the first team in MLB history to hit into four or more double plays in a game while also recording one or fewer hits. That bit of history was aided by the Braves pitchers walking five batters. Through the first two games of this interleague series, the Braves have outscored the Yankees 16-3.
The Yankees this season peaked at 11 games over .500 on June 4, but then the slide began. They went 11-12 in June and then 10-15 in July. Thus far in August, Bret Boone's squad is just 5-9. They're in peril of registering their first losing season since 1992. Our Mike Axisa recently recounted the series of decisions and misfortunes that led the Yankees to this current low point.
If there's any hope moving forward, there's some to be found back in, yes, 1995. After going 60-60 and then slipping to 60-61 a day later, that '95 team under Buck Showalter finished the regular season on a 19-4 heater and made the postseason as a wild-card team. As for the current Yankees, they're in last place in the brutal AL East. They have better odds in the wild-card chase, where they're 6 ½ games out of the final wild-card position and behind three teams in that particular chase. Likely, it'll take a 1995-style strong finish for them to make the postseason for a seventh straight year.