The New York Yankees fell to the Minnesota Twins on Friday, losing 4-3 in front of their home fans. However, rookie shortstop Anthony Volpe got a major milestone out of the way early in the game.
Volpe led off for the Yankees in the bottom of the first inning. On the second pitch he saw, he took Twins starter Louie Varland deep for his first career home run. Yankees captain Aaron Judge made it back-to-back round-trippers in the next at-bat.
Volpe’s home run is noteworthy, as Yankees fans haven’t seen something like it in 64 years. The rookie shortstop became the first Bronx Bomber to hit his first homer from the leadoff spot since Bobby Richardson in 1959.
The Twins battled back in the sixth inning. Minnesota got on the board thanks to a Carlos Correa solo shot to make it 2-1. The Yankees restored a two-run lead in the bottom half thanks to a Giancarlo Stanton home run.
In the top of the seventh, the Twins once again pulled within one run. Outfielder Kyle Garlick hit a solo home run to make the game 3-2 heading into the eighth inning.
In the eighth inning, the Yankees lost the lead for good. With two runners on, Correa cleared the bases with a double down the right-field line. Minnesota led 4-3, which went on to be the final score.
Volpe has had some trouble hitting at the major league level early in his career. The 21-year-old holds a .171 batting average thus far, striking out 16 times and walking just six.
Of course, it is way too early to judge a player this season. Volpe’s fantastic Spring Training performance earned him the right to begin as the Yankees’ Opening Day shortstop. There is certainly plenty of time for him to adjust to major-league pitching.
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