|Yankees look to stay hot against Rockies|
While a team always wants to score first, an early deficit is hardly anything challenging for the New York Yankees to overcome. In each game of their four-game winning streak, the Yankees fell behind early only to quickly rally.
New York seeks a fifth straight win Saturday afternoon when it continues a three-game interleague series against the Colorado Rockies at Yankee Stadium, where temperatures are expected to approach nearly 100 degrees.
The Yankees are a season-high 30 games over .500 after opening the series with an 8-2 victory. Like they did in their three wins over Tampa Bay, the Yankees scored eight unanswered runs, highlighted by a grand slam from Edwin Encarnacion in the third, a two-run homer by Aaron Judge in the sixth and two RBIs by former Colorado infielder DJ LeMahieu.
"We always know we have a lot of ball game to play, especially when you get down early," Judge said. "And it doesn't stop with this lineup."
Those hits gave the Yankees their 15th win in the last 18 home games and a 22-6 mark in their last 28 games since June 15. Those hits also put the Yankees in position to win another home series and improve to 13-0-1 in their last 14 home series since dropping two of three to the Chicago White Sox April 12-14.
The Rockies are on a five-game losing streak. They are getting outscored 116-59 in a 2-12 slide since June 30.
Ryan McMahon homered and Garrett Hampson had an RBI double but the Rockies struck out 17 times.
"Tonight was a bad night," Colorado manager Bud Black said. "We got to be able to do a better job of putting the ball in play.
"We're in a little bit of a bad rut both on the mound and at the plate and a little bit of that is strikeout related."
Masahiro Tanaka (6-5, 3.81 ERA) will start on five days' rest due to Thursday's doubleheader and is seven strikeouts away from 900 in the majors. His next win will be his 170th combined win between the majors (70) and Japan (99).
Tanaka last pitched Sunday when he won his third straight decision by allowing two runs on four hits in six innings of a 4-2 win over Toronto.
Tanaka is facing Colorado for the first time and is 8-8 with a 3.70 ERA in 20 career interleague starts.
Antonio Senzatela (8-6, 5.79) starts for Colorado and his next win will tie Jon Gray for the team lead. In his last eight starts, Senzatela is 5-2 with a 5.77 ERA as the Rockies have scored 41 runs in the five victories, including Sunday when he allowed eight runs on seven hits in 5 1/3 innings in a 10-9 win over the Cincinnati Reds.
Senzatela is facing the Yankees for the first time and is 3-3 with a 4.95 ERA in nine career games (eight starts) against American League opponents.
--Field Level Media