NEW YORK -- It was good to see left-hander Mike Minor back in the All-Star form he flashed all through the first half of the season. On Monday afternoon, Minor was dominant, allowing five hits over 7 1/3 innings as the Rangers blanked the Yankees, 7-0, at Yankee Stadium after a two-hour, 52-minute rain delay.
The Yankees had gone 220 consecutive games without being shut out, a stat that Minor only learned about after the game ended.
“That’s pretty cool,” Minor said.
• Box score
“It helps when you have your best pitcher on the mound,” Rangers manager Chris Woodward said about the shutout. “I felt what he did today against a pretty good lineup -- the way he executed pitches and moved back and forth. He started off with breaking balls when he needed to and finished with fastballs in on them. He just got a lot of weak contact, punched guys out. He made it look easy.”
In his previous two starts, both against the Angels, Minor allowed 10 earned runs in 12 1/3 innings, but Monday’s outing was a different story. The lefty’s changeup, four-seam fastball, slider and knuckle curve were crisp and the Yanks did not put a runner in scoring position between the first inning and the eighth, when he left the game. At one point, Minor had retired 16 of 17 hitters, though the left-hander ran out of gas after allowing two hits in the eighth.
“He’s nasty, man,” Yankees outfielder Clint Fraizer said of Minor. “His fastball plays up, which means that it might stay 92, but it feels faster than that. And then he obviously threw every pitch that he wanted in every count that he wanted. And you know, he came out on top. They came out on top. It was a great game by them, and obviously we have to come back tomorrow and try to do to them what they did to us.”
Minor said he was able to work well with rookie catcher Jose Trevino, who homered in the fifth inning and is expected to get his share of playing time behind the plate. Minor admitted that he shook off Trevino at times early in the game, but he said that they got on the same page soon thereafter.
“Me and Trevino mixed it up pretty well,” Minor said. “We mixed every pitch. I thought when they felt we were going to stay on one side of the plate, we went to the other side. We didn’t get into any patterns. I felt like we attacked.”
Texas' offense made sure that Minor had more than enough support to win his 12th game of the season, hitting three home runs in the victory. Delino DeShields highlighted the scoring in the eighth inning by hitting a three-run homer off New York left-hander Nestor Cortes Jr. that put the game out of reach.
DeShields on 3-run homer
Sep. 2nd, 2019
Although they are not in playoff contention, Minor was encouraged by the way the Rangers played against one of the best teams in the game. This month will be a big test for Texas, as it will face all teams with winning records during September, with the exception of Baltimore.
“We kind of know where we are right now,” Minor said. “If we are going to be good next year or many years from now, then we have to go through those things. We have to play them and play them well. We have new guys, new faces. They have to show us what they have. We have to play those teams next year if we are going to make it to the playoffs. The message has been brought to our attention.”
Bill Ladson has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2002. He covered the Nationals/Expos from 2002-2016. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook.