The Yankees defeated the Athletics in the 2018 American League Wild Card Game by a score of 7-2. For the second year in a row, Luis Severino started the winner-take-all game, proving last year was just a fluke, pitching four no-hit innings before being lifted in the fifth after back-to-back singles to lead off the inning. He would ultimately go 4+ innings, allowing no runs on two hits while walking four and striking out 7. Aaron Judge got the Yankees on the board early with a first inning two-run home run off of A’s opener Liam Hendriks.
The Yankees’ offense went quiet after their strong first inning, being essentially shut down by Lou Trivino and former-Yankee Shawn Kelley. They would finally strike for more in the sixth when Aaron Hicks doubled to right center field to score Aaron Judge. Later in the inning, Luke Voit just missed a home run to right field, ending up with a two-run triple, the first triple of his career, that scored Hicks and Giancarlo Stanton to make it 5-0 Yankees. Didi Gregorius followed up with a sacrifice fly to score Voit, and while the play was challenged by the A’s and reviewed, the call on the field stood, and the Yankees extended their lead to 6-0.
Oakland finally got on the board in the top of the eighth, as Khris Davis hit a two-run homer to right field off of Zach Britton. Davis, who led Major League Baseball with 48 long balls in the regular season, was held to just that one hit while striking out twice on the night. In the bottom of the eighth, Giancarlo Stanton picked up his first career Postseason hit in an emphatic way, crushing a 443-foot home run into the upper deck in left field to make it 7-2. Aroldis Chapman came on to record the final three outs of the game, doing that while allowing one hit and striking out two to secure the Wild Card Game victory for the Yankees.
The Yankees advance to the American League Division Series to face the powerhouse Red Sox who put together an 108-54 regular season. The Yankees went 9-10 against the Red Sox during the season, but with a fully staffed roster, the Yankees will look to make a statement over their rivals in their first Postseason meeting since 2004. As of Wednesday night, the Yankees are yet to announce a starting pitcher for Game 1 at Fenway Park, but it figures to be JA Happ, who went 7-0 with a 2.69 ERA in 11 starts after being acquired in a midseason trade with the Blue Jays. The Red Sox will counter with their ace, Chris Sale, who is coming off yet another stellar season, going 12-4 with a 2.11 ERA in 27 starts. His 8.38 Postseason ERA has been a topic of discussion for quite some time, and Sale will look to change the narrative on his Postseason career, while the Yankees will look to capitalize on any mistakes he makes. First pitch for Game 1 is set for 7:32 PM ET.