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Yankees shut out Blue Jays for a ninth straight win, improving MLB’s best record to 49-16

The New York Yankees just keep rolling. On Saturday afternoon, the Yankees shut out the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Center (NY 4, TOR 0) to extend their winning streak to nine games. The Yankees have won nine straight games, 16 of their last 17 games, 30 of their last 38 games, and 42 of their last 52 games. Their plus 144 run differential is easily the best in baseball.

Starter Jameson Taillon held a strong Toronto lineup scoreless for 5 2/3 innings – the Yankees didn’t concede more than one run in nine of their 16 games in June – and the big hit on offense was Aaron Hicks’ two-out bases – Clearing doubles against likely All-Star Alek Manoah in the fourth inning. For the action footage:

Hicks came into play Saturday with a career .125/.299/.161 batting line with loaded bases, and the double was his first extra base hit with full sacks since 2017. He struggled with consistent loaded bases throughout his career, then he prevailed with a big double against a candidate from Cy Young. This is the story of the 2022 Yankees. Everything is going right.

Righty Clay Holmes recorded the last four outs on Saturday, extending his scoreless streak to 31 2/3 innings and 29 appearances. Those are new franchise records. Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera (who else?) held the previous records with 30 2/3 innings and 28 goalless appearances. Holmes last conceded a run on opening day and has a .90 ERA in 60 innings since he came on in a trade with the Pittsburgh Pirates as of last year’s deadline.

There have been five winning streaks of at least nine games this season, and the Yankees have two:

  1. Atlanta Braves: 14 games (June 1-15)
  2. New York Yankees: 11 games (April 22 to May 4)
  3. Houston Astros: 11 games (May 2-13)
  4. Philadelphia Phillies: 9 games (June 1-11)
  5. New York Yankees: 9 Games and Counting (June 9 to Present)

Saturday’s win lifted the Yankees to a 49-16 MLB season best and put them on pace for 122 wins. Every other team has at least 23 losses and the Yankees are 12 games ahead of the second-placed Blue Jays in the AL East. The 2022 Yankees became the eighth team in history to win at least 49 of their first 65 games. Here are the other seven, listed chronologically:

2001 seafarers

51-14

116-46

ALCS lost

1998 Yankees

49-16

114-48

World Series won

1955 Dodger

49-16

98-55

World Series won

1939 Yankees

50-15

106-45

World Series won

1928 Yankees

49-16

101-53

World Series won

1912 Giants

53-11

103-48

Lost World series

1902 pirates

49-15

103-36

Lost World series

“I understand where we’re at, I understand the start we’re on and the position we’re in, and obviously I’m really excited about that,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone told MLB.com before Friday’s game. “But we also understand that as a team and as a group, we haven’t done anything yet… It’s probably boring, but that’s how we roll.”

The Yankees will look to end the sweep and extend their winning streak to 10 games in Sunday afternoon’s series finals against the Blue Jays. New York will send right Luis Severino, who missed Thursday’s start due to illness, to the mound against left Yusei Kikuchi.

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