The Yankees once again showed the Twins what could be in store for them in a potential AL wild-card game, completing a three-game series sweep on Wednesday with an 11-3 pounding at the Stadium.
Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez and Didi Gregorius went deep for the surging Yankees, who lowered their magic number to clinch a playoff berth to four with their 14th win in 18 games. They also moved within 2.5 games of Boston in the AL East; the Red Sox take on Baltimore on Wednesday night.
Luis Severino didn’t last long in his first career start against the Twins, allowing three runs on five hits in just three innings (71 pitches).
Luis Severino struggled in his first-ever start against the Twins.
But Judge and Sanchez blasted back-to-back home runs in the bottom of the third to draw the Yanks (85-67) even, before Gregorius pulled a three-run shot to right during a six-run fourth inning for a 9-3 lead. Sanchez, Jacoby Ellsbury and Greg Bird each notched three of the Yankees’ 15 hits.
PLAY OF THE GAME
Gregorius made a sliding stab of Joe Mauer’s grounder up the middle and threw him out for the second out of the fifth inning.
Back-to-back homers by Judge and Sanchez against Twins starter Bartolo Colon in the third turned a three-run hole into a 3-3 tie.
STAR OF THE GAME
Aaron Judge clubbed his AL-leading 45th home run of the season.
(Noah K. Murray/USA Today Sports)
Judge’s two-run blast to right, his AL-leading 45th of the year, also gave him 100 RBI for his rookie campaign. That makes him the first Yankee with at least 100 RBI, 100 runs scored and 100 walks in the same season since Jason Giambi in 2002.
STAT OF THE DAY
Didi Gregorius passed Derek Jeter for most single-season homers by a Yankees shortstop.
(Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
25. Gregorius’ home run was his 25th of the season, breaking a tie with Derek Jeter (1999) for most home runs by a shortstop in one season in franchise history.
Ellsbury went 3-for-4 (single, double and triple) with a walk. He has reached base 38 times in 67 plate appearances since Sept. 3.
Colon, the former Mets and Yankees righty, was tagged for six earned runs on seven hits in 3.1 innings for the Twins.
Friday, at Toronto, 7:07 p.m. TV-WPIX
RHP Masahiro Tanaka (12-11, 4.73) vs. TBD