Yan­kees stun Hernandez, back Sa­bathia in vic­tory over Mariners

The News-Times - - SPORTS -

NEW YORK — The Yan­kees pounced on Felix Hernandez, build­ing a big cush­ion for CC Sa­bathia in a showdown of ac­claimed vet­er­ans as New York beat the Seat­tle Mariners 7-3 Mon­day night.

Luke Voit, Brett Gard­ner and Thairo Estrada home­red off Hernandez while New York gave Sa­bathia a

6-0 lead after two in­nings and held on for its 12th win in 16 games. Hernandez

(1-3) set­tled in after that, com­plet­ing five in­nings of seven-run ball.

Domingo San­tana and Dee Gor­don home­red off Sa­bathia, but the over­sized lefty lim­ited Seat­tle to three runs over five in­nings. Sa­bathia (2-1) struck out five in his first start since be­com­ing the 17th pitcher with 3,000 strike­outs last week.

Sa­bathia and Hernandez en­tered with a com­bined

5,498 strike­outs, the most be­tween op­pos­ing starters since San Fran­cisco’s Randy John­son (4,867) faced Hous­ton’s Roy Oswalt

(1,418) in 2009. Sa­bathia struck out Mitch Haniger on three pitches to start the game and cruised the first time through the or­der. He tired in the fifth, load­ing the bases with a four-pitch walk to San­tana with two outs be­fore break­ing Jay Bruce’s bat on a ground­out to first on his 99th pitch.

Hernandez had been sharper this sea­son than dur­ing a dis­mal 2018, re­ly­ing more on his curve­ball and do­ing a bet­ter job throw­ing strikes. That all fell apart quickly in the Bronx.

Voit hit a two-run shot in the first and Gard­ner home­red lead­ing off the sec­ond. Gard­ner also tripled and scored in the third.

Estrada went the other way to right-cen­ter for his first ma­jor league homer in the sec­ond, get­ting an ex­tended silent treat­ment in the home dugout after round­ing the bases.

Hernandez and Estrada are both from Venezuela, their home­towns sep­a­rated by a roughly 45-minute drive.

Seat­tle loaded the bases with one out in the sixth against Jonathan Holder but couldn’t push any runs across. Adam Ot­tavino re­lieved and got a fly­out from Haniger, and Estrada made a stellar play at short to charge Tim Beck­ham’s slow grounder for the fi­nal out.

San­tana hit a two-run homer in the fourth and Gor­don lined a solo shot in the fifth. Gor­don had three hits, but the Mariners have dropped seven of eight.

New York hasn’t lost a sea­son se­ries against Seat­tle since 2003, go­ing 12-0-4.

STICK­ING AND PICK­ING

Third base­man Gio Ur­shela, still in the lineup de­spite Miguel An­du­jar’s re­turn from the in­jured list Satur­day, helped Sa­bathia with a cou­ple slick de­fen­sive plays. He made a stellar over-the-shoul­der catch on Omar Nar­vaez’s flair in shal­low left field in the third, then bare­handed a chop­per and threw smoothly to nab Beck­ham at first lead­ing off the fourth.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Yan­kees: OF Clint Fra­zier (sprained an­kle) re­turned from the in­jured list and started in right field. … RHP Dellin Be­tances played catch for the first time since get­ting a cor­ti­sone shot in his right shoul­der last month. He felt good and will throw again Wed­nes­day, though he’s not ex­pected back un­til at least June.

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