Rookie Miguel Andujar delivered the game-winning single with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning as the New York Yankees squandered a five-run lead and overcame two wild pitches by closer Aroldis Chapman in a 7-6 victory over the Cleveland Indians on Friday night at Yankee Stadium.
Andujar gave the Yankees their 13th win in 14 games when he blooped a 1-2 breaking ball from Cody Allen into right field. Andujar’s hit scored Giancarlo Stanton, who began the winning rally with a double off Alexi Ogando (0-1).
After getting the hit, Andujar rounded first and was mobbed by teammates in short right field.
The Yankees seemingly had the game won in the top of the ninth as Chapman was one strike away while runners were at second and third. On a 0-2 pitch to Jason Kipnis, Chapman threw the ball over catcher Gary Sanchez’s mask and Yan Gomes raced in and easily scored the tying run.
Chapman (1-0) kept the game tied by fanning Kipnis and was awarded the win.
Before Chapman’s wild outing, Aaron Judge drew a bases-loaded walk with two outs in the eighth off Ogando to give the Yankees a 6-5 lead.
A day after blowing a three-run lead in the seventh inning at Houston, Chasen Shreve and David Robertson combined to cough up the lead in the eighth.
Shreve allowed a three-run homer to Bradley Zimmer and Robertson gave up a two-run shot to Jose Ramirez on a full-count fastball.
Before Andujar’s first career walk-off hit, New York rookie second baseman Gleyber Torres hit his first career homer when he hit a three-run shot in the fourth off Josh Tomlin.
Judge and Sanchez also hit solo homers for the Yankees.
At 21 years old, 142 days, Torres became the youngest Yankee to hit his first homer since John Ellis on May 17, 1969. Ellis was 20 years, 269 days, when he homered off California Angels right-hander Bob Priddy in the eighth inning at the original Yankee Stadium.
Before the Yankees imploded, CC Sabathia allowed a season-low three hits in six innings.
Tomlin allowed five runs (four earned) and eight hits in seven innings.
The Yankees also survived an injury scare to shortstop Didi Gregorius in the eighth.
He dove awkwardly and was kicked in the head by Francisco Lindor’s right cleat while making a putout at second base on a grounder by Jason Kipnis. After trainer Steve Donahue and manager Aaron Boone checked on Gregorius for a few minutes, he stayed in.
—Field Level Media