Judge walk-off walk lifts Yanks over Chisox, 6th win in row
(AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
By RONALD BLUM
AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) Aaron Judge smiled and chuckled.
"A legitimate walk off," he said. "We'll take it. I'm not complaining one bit."
Liam Hendriks forced in the game-ending run with a bases-loaded walk to the 6-foot-7 slugger in the ninth inning, and the New York Yankees overcame Aroldis Chapman's first blown save of the year to beat the Chicago White Sox 5-4 on Sunday and extend their winning streak to a season-high six games.
An afternoon that began with Jameson Taillon completing a historic scoreless turn through the New York rotation ended with the Yankees' second walk-off win during a three-game sweep of the AL Central leaders, New York's fourth walk-off win in its last five home games. The Yankees are 23-9 since a 5-10 start.
"This is what we expect. We expect to be a great team," manager Aaron Boone said. "For the better part of a few weeks now, it's starting to sync up and and we're seeing the results."
Judge thought this was his first game-ending RBI since Double-A, when his 10th-inning homer lifted Trenton over Portland on April 16, 2015, more than a year before the debut of a big league career that has included a pair of All-Star selections.
New York led 4-3 before pinch-hitter Andrew Vaughn's one-out homer, an opposite-field shot to right in the ninth off Chapman (4-0), who blew a save for the first time in 12 chances this year and gave up his first earned run. Vaughn sprinted around the bases.
"The swing he put on him was absolutely perfect. Perfect," White Sox manager Tony La Russa said. "We should be celebrating, but we're not."
Clint Frazier, who missed the previous five starts with a stiff neck, singled off Aaron Bummer (0-3) leading off the bottom half for his first three-hit game this year, lifting his average to .171. Frazier stole his second base of the game as Brett Gardner struck out, and AL batting champion DJ LeMahieu was intentionally walked.
Tyler Wade hit a slow six-hopper to Nick Madrigal and beat the throw from the charging second baseman for an infield single.
Hendriks came in to face Judge, who memorably hit a go-ahead, two-run homer off him in the first inning of the 2018 AL wild-card game against Oakland.
Judge swung under a 97.7 mph fastball near his neck, took a slider in the dirt and another that sailed high. Hendriks missed badly upstairs with a fastball and, with catcher Zack Collins targeting the low, outside corner, threw a fastball that wound up nearly a foot above the strike zone.
Judge softly threw down his bat as Frazier trotted home with the Yankees' first walk-off walk since Juan Miranda against Boston on Sept. 26, 2010.
"I'll keep that ball, for sure," Judge said.
Taillon pitched two-hit ball over five innings and extended the scoreless streak for Yankees starters to 35 innings following Corey Kluber's no-hitter at Texas and seven-inning shutdowns by Domingo German, Jordan Montgomery and Gerrit Cole. The 35 scoreless innings matched a string in 1947 for the second-longest in team history behind 40 innings in 1932, according to STATS. New York strung together five straight scoreless starts for the first time - the first by any team since Washington from June 20-25, 2015.
"I thought they were super aggressive, so I just kind of wanted to follow suit," Taillon said.
Chicago (26-19) has lost three straight for the first time this year. The White Sox grounded into a pair of double plays, a day after hitting into four and two days after grounding into a triple play.
Gleyber Torres hit a two-run single in the first off Dallas Keuchel after the four-time Gold Glove winner misplayed Luke Voit's comebacker - the ball bounded off where the mound meets the grass - for his first error since September 2017, leading to a pair of unearned runs.
"That's pretty lackluster," Keuchel said. "You can chalk a lot of it up to me."
New York built a 3-0 lead with a run-scoring double-play grounder in the fifth after loading the bases against Keuchel, who lasted four-plus innings.
Jose Abreu's 450-foot, two-run home r in the sixth off Wandy Peralta went over the visitors' bullpen in left and cut the gap to 3-2, but shortstop Tim Anderson made a run-scoring throwing erro r while trying to complete a double play in the bottom half.
Yasmani Grandal homered in the seventh against Chad Green, a ball a fan behind the right-field wall caught over Frazier's glove.
"I thought that I was going to get it," Frazier said. "He just caught the ball at a higher point than where I was at."
New York's 1947 scoreless streak included shutouts by Spec Shea, Allie Reynolds and Spud Chandler, and eight scoreless innings by Bill Bevens, who led 17-0 when he allowed Ted Williams' two-out homer in the ninth.
Torres had three hits and is 11 for 18 since returning from the COVID-19 injured list, raising his batting average from .234 to .282.
White Sox: CF Adam Engel, sidelined since tearing his right hamstring during a March 20 spring training game against Cleveland, is to start an injury rehabilitation assignment Tuesday with Triple-A Charlotte.
Yankees: DH Giancarlo Stanton (strained left quadriceps) took batting practice. He is eligible to be activated Tuesday. ... LHP Zack Britton, recovering from surgery on March 15 to remove a bone spur in his pitching elbow, was to throw a bullpen Sunday or Monday, then start a rehab assignment, most likely with Double-A Somerset. Boone said Britton will need about five rehab outings.
White Sox: Lance Lynn (4-1) starts a homestand opener Monday against St. Louis, pitting Hall of Fame manager Tony La Russa against the team he managed from 1996-2011 and led to three NL pennants and two World Series titles.
Yankees: Kluber (4-2), coming off his no-hitter, starts a series opener against Toronto on Tuesday.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports
Updated May 23, 2021