|Orlando "El Duque" Hernandez.|
From now until the end of the season, we will be tracking the progress of the Yankees with their 1998 World Championship team, which won 114 games in the regular season.
Through 96 Games:
Friday night: Mets 7, Yankees 5
The Mets jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first, as Asdrubal Cabrera, Michael Conforto, and Jose Bautista each had RBI doubles against Yankees starter Domingo German.
Yoenis Cespedes, in his first game back after a long stint on the disabled list, homered in the fourth inning to make it 4-0.
The Mets opened up a 6-1 lead in the fifth, but the Yankees battled back in the sixth when Neil Walker had an RBI double.
The Yankees pulled to within 6-5 in the eighth when Didi Gregorius got an RBI double followed by a Giancarlo Stanton RBI groundout.
That was as close as the Yankees would get, as they pounded out 14 hits, but just couldn't get the big one and left 14 men on base.
July 22, 1998: Yankees 13, Tigers 2
The Yankees got the hit parade going early, as Tino Martinez and Tim Raines each had RBI singles in the bottom of the first to make it 2-0.
They kept it going in the second when Tino had a three-run triple, and in the third when Chuck Knoblauch had a three-run homer to make it 8-2.
Darryl Strawberry hit a two-run shot to blow it open in the fourth, giving the Yankees a 10-2 lead.
Orlando "El Duque" Hernandez got the win to improve to 5-3, as he went six innings, allowing two runs on seven hits and two walks, with two strikeouts.
Where they stand: With the loss Friday night, the 2018 Yankees (62-34) now fall nine games off the pace of the 1998 team, which was 71-25 through 96 games.
Red Sox: Boston improved to 69-30 on Friday night with a 1-0 win in Detroit, opening up a 5-1/2 game lead on the Yankees. By comparison, the 1998 Yankees were 73-26 through 99 games, so Boston is four games off the pace in their quest to become one of just four major league teams to win 112+ games in a season.