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Yankees Game 151: Sanchez overpowers the Rays in the Yankees win

New York Yankees 11 – Tampa Bay Rays 5

Looking to grow a winning streak, the Yankees turn to their ace, Masahiro Tanaka.

Against Alex Cobb in the first inning, Brett Gardner led off with a single and Jacoby Ellsbury walked. Gary Sanchez followed with a single that scored Gardner from second. Brian McCann made it a two-run game with a single to right field. With two outs, Ronald Torreyes found a hole for a run-scoring single to complete a three-run first inning.

In the second inning, Donovan Solano and Brett Gardner started with a pair of singles. After Ellsbury advanced them into scoring position, Gary Sanchez made history. The Yankees catcher hit a home run just fair inside the left field foul pole to extend the Yankees lead to six.

With his three-run home run to left, Sanchez became the fastest player to 18 home runs, accomplishing the feat in 45 games.

Brian McCann followed with a single and Mark Teixeira settled for a double to right field to put two in scoring position. The double knocked Cobb out of the game with one out in the second inning. Steve Geltz gave up a sacrifice fly to Didi Gregorius to finish a four-run second inning that put the Yankees up by seven for Tanaka to work with.

The Rays live and die by the home run so the third inning encapsulated their season.

Bobby Wilson led off the third inning with a solo home run. Tanaka appeared to rebound by getting the next two outs but the Rays went back-to-back-to-back as Evan Longoria, Brad Miller and Corey Dickerson each hit solo home runs to muscle their way back into the game. The three home runs pulled the Rays within three of the Yankees.

The game remained 7-4 until Gary Sanchez continued his historic run in the sixth inning. With two outs, Sanchez hit a home run to center field against reliever Justin Marks. In 45 games, Sanchez has hit 19 home runs.

Despite giving up the four runs, Tanaka settled down to pitch six innings and exited with the lead. In six innings, Masahiro Tanaka allowed four runs on seven hits. He walked two and struck out five.

All four runs came in the third inning that featured a career-worst four home runs surrendered.

Adam Warren pitched a scoreless seventh inning but Brad Miller made it a two home run night when he hit a solo home run with one out in the eighth inning. Tommy Layne and Tyler Clippard helped finish off the eighth inning.

In the ninth inning, Didi Gregorius led off with a single against Erasmo Ramirez. With one out, Mason Williams made it a four-run game with a single to center field, scoring Gregorius. Donovan Solano really put the game out of reach with a two-run home run to left, his first as a Yankee.

With the five-run lead, Jonathan Holder came on to retire the last three batters of the game, securing the Yankees second win in a row.

 

Win – Masahiro Tanaka (14-4)

Loss – Alex Cobb (1-1)

Notables

Yankees

*Gary Sanchez – 3 for 4, 3 R, BB, 2 HR (19; Three-run & Solo) in the 2nd & 6th, 5 RBI (38)

*Brian McCann – 4 for 5, R, RBI (56)

*Donovan Solano – 3 for 5, 2 R, 2B, Two-run home run (1) in the 9th, 2 RBI (2)

Rays

*Brad Miller – 2 for 4, 2 R, Two solo home runs (30) in the 3rd & 8th, 2 RBI (77)

*Corey Dickerson – 2 for 4, R, 2B, Solo home run (22) in the 3rd, RBI (64)

 

Current Yankees Record: 79-72