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You’re Not Going to Believe This, But the Yankees Struggled With the Bases Loaded Last Night

NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 07:  Alex Rodriguez #13 of the New York Yankees reacts after striking out with the bases loaded in the fifth inning as Jose Lobaton #21 of the Tampa Bay Rays returns the ball at Yankee Stadium on June 7, 2012  in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) A-Rod, last night.

A lot's been going right for the Yankees over the past week or so — a few impressive pitching performances especially stand out — but their struggles with the bases loaded continue. Last night, down 5-1 in the fifth, Mark Teixeira, batting third last night, walked, loading the bases. But Alex Rodriguez struck out on David Price's eleventh pitch of the at-bat, and Robinson Cano grounded out to second to end the inning.

The Yankees' woes as a team with the bases loaded (and with men in scoring position, in general) have been well documented, but Rodriguez and Cano have especially struggled: A-Rod is 1-for-10 with the bases loaded so far in 2012, and Cano is 1-for-12, though Cano's one hit is a grand slam. As a team, the Yankees went 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position last night and are hitting just .218 on the season in such situations. It's only June, of course, but this has become a thing.

This isn't to say that the Yankees' inability to  score some runs in that fifth inning is the only reason they lost: CC Sabathia struck out twelve but didn't pitch his best game, A-Rod made a costly error in the third, and Price deserves a lot of credit for winning that battle with A-Rod with the bases loaded in the fifth. So, too, does the Tampa Bay bull pen: Price's long fifth inning ended his night, but the Yankees would never get closer than three runs down.

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Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images