Early in the 2018 season, David Price was scheduled to start against the Yankees before being mysteriously scratched. The reasons for the surprise missed scheduled start varied from wrist tightness to hand numbness to tenderness, but when Price was able to return to the mound and start just a few days later, it was obvious what the reason for him being scratched was: the Yankees.
Not even a month prior to his scratch on April 11, Price lasted only an inning against the Yankees, and not even two months after the scratch, Price would have his worst performance against the Yankees on July 1 on Sunday Night Baseball. Price’s line from that July 1 start: 3.1 IP, 9 H, 8 R, 8 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 5 HR. The Yankees produced five home runs without Gary Sanchez, who has hit Price better than any other major leaguer. Price would pick up a no-decision against the Yankees on Aug. 5 and then was embarrassed once more by them on Sept. 19 (5.1 IP, 5 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 4 BB, 2 K, 3 HR).
That season, his miserable history against the Yankees culminated in Game 2 of the ALDS when he was once again lit up. Ten pitches into the game Aaron Judge sent a 1-2 pitch high over the Green Monster in left-center where few have ever hit a ball, and then leading off the second, Sanchez crushed the third pitch of the inning over the Monster as well. Price didn’t make it through the second inning as he was pulled after recording only five outs (1.2 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 0 K, 2 HR), leaving the game with two runners. After his departure, Judge barreled up Joe Kelly, but the 109.8 mph line drive was hit directly at Betts otherwise Price’s final line would have been much worse than it already was.
The last time the Yankees got to face Price as a Red Sox was on Aug. 4 of this past season, and he put together his usual performance, unable to last three innings at Yankee Stadium (2.2 IP, 9 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, 2 HR).
Price leaves Boston and the American League with the current Yankees roster having a .317/.383/.639 line against him in 231 plate appearances. That’s a 1.022 OPS. Within the overall performance are some memorable individual performances:
Gary Sanchez (21 plate appeances): .500/.619/.1625, 6 HR, 12 RBIs
Aaron Judge (16 plate appearances): .308/.438/1.000, 3 HR, 3 RBIs
Luke Voit (10 plate appearances): .444/.500/1.444, 3 HR, 4 RBIs
(Aaron Hicks, Gleyber Torres, Gio Urshela Miguela Andujar and Kyle Higashioka have also homered off Price.)
Unfortunately, the Yankees will no longer have the luxury of seeing Price multiple times during the regular season. There won’t be anymore video game-related injury excuses or last-minute scratches or early exits for the $217 million pitcher against the Yankees.
The Yankees won’t have a chance to see him until 2022 — in the last year of his contract — when the Yankees next play the NL West in the regular season, unless the Yankees and Dodgers meet in the World Series. If they do finally meet in the World Series, the Dodgers will want to begin whichever game he starts with their bullpen up.
My book The Next Yankees Era: My Transition from the Core Four to the Baby Bombers is now available as an ebook!