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Yankees' Aaron Judge Homers as Tommy Kahnle Implodes in Loss to Nationals

The Yankees suffer a heart-breaking loss to the Nationals after blowing a lead in the seventh inning.

The New York Yankees experienced a rollercoaster of emotions this week. After breaking their nine-game losing streak with a triumphant victory highlighted by three Aaron Judge home runs, they were hit with a devastating loss the very next day. The Yankees entered the seventh inning with a 3-1 lead, only to have Tommy Kahnle give it all away and more. The Nationals took the lead with Alex Call's two-run homer, followed by CJ Abrams' solo homer to add insult to injury.

Kahnle, who faced the wrath of disappointed fans as he walked off the mound, tarnished an otherwise strong performance by the Yankees' pitching staff. Michael King, in his second start of the season, showed promise by allowing only one unearned run on one hit in 2.2 innings, while striking out three. The Yankees are hoping to groom King for a spot in their starting rotation in the future. However, he was pulled in the third inning after Anthony Volpe's error, reaching 50 pitches.

Jhony Brito also played a significant role, as he executed Aaron Boone's bullpen day plans. He pitched 2.1 innings and was charged with one run, which was allowed by Kahnle on Jake Alu's single. Brito, a 25-year-old right-hander, has an ERA of 5.27 for the season and is also vying for a starting pitcher position.

Despite the loss, Aaron Judge continued his impressive performance by hitting his fourth home run in two games. In the bottom of the first inning, Judge sent a line drive into the right-center field bullpen off Nationals' starter Patrick Corbin, marking his 28th home run of the season. This accomplishment is even more remarkable considering Judge has only played in 73 games.

Gleyber Torres contributed to the Yankees' offense with a two-run homer in the bottom of the third, reaching the 20 home run mark for the fourth time in his career. Torres has been one of the few consistent contributors for the Yankees this season.

Giancarlo Stanton added a solo home run in the eighth inning off Jordan Weems, but the Nationals quickly responded with a run of their own in the ninth, thanks to Joey Menesis' infield single. Kyle Finnegan entered the game to secure the final three outs, making the ninth inning quite suspenseful.

In a last-ditch effort, Stanton hit an RBI single to cut the lead to one run, setting the stage for Harrison Bader to potentially tie the game with the winning run on first base. Bader hit a deep ball, but it was caught at the warning track in left-center field, sealing the victory for the Nationals.

Unfortunately, the Yankees' wins and losses have become mere numbers at this point, as their chances of making the playoffs stand at a mere 0.3%, according to FanGraphs. The team has not won a series since July 21-23 against the Kansas City Royals. As the season progresses, the focus will shift towards developing young players like Everson Pereira and Oswald Peraza. These youngsters, who were called up to gain experience in the MLB, had a slow start in their first series, combining for a 2-for-22 performance.

Looking ahead, the Yankees will face the Tampa Bay Rays in a three-game series starting on Friday. Gerrit Cole will take the mound, continuing his quest for the Cy Young Award, while the Rays will counter with right-hander Zach Efflin.

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