ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – The benches emptied in the second inning here Sunday when Rays starter Shawn Armstrong came up and in with a 3-and-0, 94-mph fastball against Josh Donaldson.
The struggling Yankees third baseman, who before the walk had not reached base in the series, yelled at Armstrong and took a step toward the mound as both teams poured from their respective dugouts and bullpens.
It amounted, as these things usually do, to little more than some yelling between the clubs before everyone went back to their respective dugouts and bullpens. Armstrong retired three straight to end the inning.
The Yankees, who have seen their once 15 1/2-game lead over the Rays trimmed to four games going into Sunday, took a 1-0 lead in the first on Aaron Judge’s Major League Baseball-leading 53rd homer.