NEW YORK – The first inning for Yankee right-handed Sonny Gray's Friday night start against the Toronto Blue Jays was promising.
Three above, three down on 10 pitches with Can-of-Corn-Flyballs center, right and left.
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It was mainly downhill from there.
Like last week in Boston.
His command was switched off, his speed was down and there were too many mistakes. And so, with the Blue Jays batting, the bases loaded and one out of the fourth inning of a 4-4 game, manager Aaron Boone went to his bullpen.
Gray's back to the Yankees Dugout in this cold night at Yankee Stadium was similar to what Giancarlo Stanton received during his two five-strikeout games there at this season.
The boos were loud.
At the end of the night, the Yankees ended up losing 8-5 and Gray went home with a four- starts an ERA of 8.27 due to this 5-run, 3 1
An ace during his Oakland Athletics years, Gray was a bit of a disappointment late last season after being handed out to the Yankees for a very good package of prospects by the July close, but he was mediocre at least in 2017.
His start after 2018 was worse.
What is the problem?
Here we go into the possibilities:
Is Gray injured? ?
That seems to be a legitimate question because Gray was mostly good when he was healthy for Oakland (49-44, 3.50 ERA from 2013-17). He was also frequently on the DL.
In addition, Grays speed was only 90-91 mph against the Jays, from his usual 94 in the past few seasons.
Gray talked about his health after the game.  "I'm fine," he said. "It's 40 degrees outside, I do not think anyone throws as hard in the middle of summer as he does, I feel good."
Earlier, Boone said he also believed that Gray was not injured.
Regarding the drop in speed, Boone said, "I'm not going to go so far as to say (it's) alarming, but we see a lot of 90-91 fastballs, it looks like he could not get much back So we're going to look at it and evaluate it and work hard to keep it right. "
Gray just is not good
Gray was hot in spring training, went 2-0 a 1.98 ERA in four starts with 16 strikeouts and five walks in 13 2/3 innings. But practice games are practice games, so it does not matter.
In the right season he misses his spots far too often, which leads to a series of mistakes and walks.
Here's the catch from Gary Sanchez:
"The difference I see in the spring is that he attacked boys and progressed, and that's the only difference I see, now we're going more people. "
Is Sanchez part of the problem?
As a Yankee, Gray's numbers are much better when he is thrown to replacement catcher Austin Romine (2.20 ERA, 28.2 IP, 5 games) as Sanchez (5.94 ERA, 53 IP, 10 games).
Also, Warf Gray pitched two wild places with Sanchez, who caught him on Friday night. And Sanchez was charged with his fourth passed ball of the season, all coming in the Yankees' last three games.
Before Friday's game, Boone stubbornly repeated a spring training vowel that he totally opposed pitchers with personal catchers and that's Gray and Sanchez's "a relationship that must work."
It does not work.
"We'll orbit the wagons with (Gray) and keep working because he's really important to us," Boone said.
Randy Miller can be reached at email@example.com . Follow him on Twitter @RandyJMiller . Find NJ.com on Facebook .