Shortstop Didi Gregorius hit a pair of three-run home runs and set a career high with eight RBIs as the New York Yankees beat the Tampa Bay Rays 11-4 Tuesday in manager Aaron Boone’s home debut at Yankee Stadium.
A day after six inches of snow delayed the home opener by 27 hours, Gregorius recorded his second career multi-homer performance in a game played in a misting rain. The game-time temperature of 40 was the second lowest in 10 home openers at the new Yankee Stadium.
Gregorius lined a three-run homer into the lower rows of the first level beyond the right field seats off Chris Archer in the third inning. With one out in the seventh, he sent a first-pitch fastball from Austin Pruitt (1-1) into the second deck in right field.
Gregorius drove in his final two runs with a two-run single in the eighth off Sergio Romo.
It was the most RBIs by a Yankee since Alex Rodriguez drove in 10 on April 26, 2005, when he hit three home runs against Bartolo Colon in a game against the Los Angeles Angels at the old Yankee Stadium. It also was the most RBIs by a Yankees shortstop in team history.
Gregorius’ big effort occurred on a day when Giancarlo Stanton heard boos for striking out five times for the first time in his career.
Gregorius’ second homer came after Tyler Austin snapped a 4-4 tie by scoring on a throwing error by Rays third baseman Matt Duffy on Brett Gardner’s sacrifice attempt.
New York’s four-run seventh also occurred after New York’s Tyler Wade was robbed of a home run by Carlos Gomez, who leapt over the right field wall to make the catch.
Austin scored the tiebreaking run after the Tampa Bay overcame a 4-1 deficit in the sixth on Adeiny Hechavarria’s bloop single off Jonathan Holder and pinch hitter Denard Span’s two-run double off Tommy Kahnle.
Kahnle (1-0) struck out the side in the seventh.
Gregorius also scored on Wade’s base hit in the second. Before Gregorius’ final hit, Aaron Judge drew a bases-loaded walk in the eighth.
Tampa Bay scored its other run when Jesus Sucre scored on a throwing error by third baseman Brandon Drury in the third on a grounder by Duffy.
New York starting pitcher Jordan Montgomery allowed one run and two hits in five innings.
Archer allowed four runs and six hits in five innings.
—Field Level Media