NEW YORK (AP) – Giancarlo Stanton led the 11th inning with an RBI single on Friday night and the New York Yankees returned to beat the Baltimore Orioles 4-3.
Stanton also scored a homerun as the Yankees remained 1 1/2 games ahead of Boston in the race for the AL’s first wild card.
Stanton, who was limited to designated hitter duties during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season and in his first 81 appearances this year, has played on the outfield in 15 of his last 31 games, a period in which he hits .324 with 10 home runs and 27 RBI.
The Yankees are a better 24-8 AL since Stanton made his outfield debut on July 30.
“It’s been great helping us win (and) get some good numbers at the same time,” Stanton said. “But the most important thing is the victories. If I am not playing well and we are not playing well, there is no real benefit to that in terms of a long term goal.
Ryan Mountcastle hit an RBI single in the 10th that gave Baltimore a 3-2 lead. DJ LeMahieu responded with a simple equalizer in the lower half.
Yankees reliever Clay Holmes (6-2) escaped a first and third jam without a strike early in the 11th.
“It’s tough to win on the road in extra innings and we didn’t score early in the 11th which opened the door for them,” said Orioles manager Brandon Hyde.
Stanton, whose home run in the fourth provided the Yankees’ first hit against Orioles starter John Means, shot a 2-1 Dillon Tate (0-6) pitch down the middle, easily scoring automatic runner Aaron Judge from the second with the winning race.
It was the eighth career hit for Stanton, who was assaulted by his teammates on the grass of the infield.
As long as you stand, stand by my side. pic.twitter.com/ArXejsjQTY
– New York Yankees (@Yankees) September 4, 2021
“He’s in a great position, having good beaters – obviously the home run tonight and then smokes the winner of the game,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “He’s locked in and focused and executing his plan really well right now. “
The comeback victory was the 36th of the season for the Yankees and improved them to a baseball record 49-27 in games decided by two runs or less.
“We’d like to step away a bit every now and then,” Boone said. “But it’s good that in these close quarters our guys seem to be playing their best.”
LeMahieu managed a sacrifice ball in the fifth to give the Yankees a 2-0 lead.
Trey Mancini’s two-strike homer in the sixth ousted Yankees starter Nestor Cortes Jr. Jorge Mateo, a former Yankees farm worker, tied the game by beating Jonathan Loaisiga with a strikeout in the seventh.
Cortes allowed four hits and two walks while striking out seven. He’s 3.81 with 46 strikeouts in 49 2/3 innings in his last 10 appearances, including nine starts.
Means allowed three hits and walked two with five strikeouts in five innings. Six Orioles pitchers limited the Yankees to six hits.
“I was really encouraged by the guys out of the pen,” Hyde said. “I think we pitched really well against a very good team.”
The Somerset Patriots, who are in their first season as a Yankees Double-A affiliate, posted on their official Twitter site on Friday a photo of a TD Ballpark in the dry air a day after the stadium was submerged by water following torrential rains delivered Wednesday. by the remnants of Hurricane Ida.
The historic storm, which brought up to 11 inches of rain in central New Jersey, destroyed the cars and belongings of Patriots players and coaches, who had parked their cars at TD Ballpark while Somerset was travelling.
The road trip was scheduled to end on Sunday, but the Patriots have announced that a three-game home game against the Hartford Yard Goats, scheduled to start on Tuesday, will instead be played in Connecticut.
“I saw a photo of the top of the field that looked really good today which is encouraging,” said Boone. “I hope this is something that doesn’t have a devastating impact on what has been a great situation in Somerset.”
Yankee Stadium, which absorbed several inches of rain on Wednesday, looked no worse for wear on Friday.
Orioles: RHP Hunter Harvey (shoulder / lat) is in good health but will stay at Triple-A Norfolk after posting a 14.43 ERA in his first four appearances in rehab. Harvey last pitched for Baltimore on June 28.
Yankees: SS Gleyber Torres (left thumb) was activated from the 10-day injury list before the game and went 0 for 4. Boone said Torres, who missed 22 games, would likely be out of the game. Saturday afternoon before resuming his regular playing time on Sunday. … INF Gio Urshela (left hand) missed a second game in a row. Boone said an MRI showed no damage and Urshela was able to swing, play wrestling and participate in defensive drills on Friday afternoon.
Orioles: RHP Chris Ellis (1-0, 3.09 ERA) is set to make his third start since being claimed on waivers from the Tampa Bay Rays.
Yankees: LHP Jordan Montgomery (5-5, 3.52 ERA) is 1-0 with a 2.30 ERA in three starts since leaving the COVID-19 injured list.
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