EditorsNote: Adding dropped word ‘time’ after ‘second’ in fifth graf
Rookie Jake Bauers homered on the first pitch in the bottom of the 12th inning as the Tampa Bay Rays completed a three-game sweep of the New York Yankees with a 7-6 victory on Sunday afternoon at Tropicana Field.
Bauers lifted a fastball from Chasen Shreve (2-2) 420 feet over the center field fence. It was his second career homer and Tampa Bay’s first hit since the third inning.
It also occurred after Bauers nearly hit a grand slam off Shreve in Saturday’s 4-0 win, and four innings after Giancarlo Stanton hit a game-tying homer off Vidal Nuno.
After hitting the ball, Bauers flipped off his helmet between first and second and was met by his teammates in a raucous celebration at home plate.
Bauers’ game-winner gave the Rays a sweep of the Yankees in a series of at least three games for the seventh time in team history. Tampa Bay also swept a series against an opponent who entered with the best record in baseball for the second time in team history, and first time since sweeping three from the Chicago Cubs June 17-19, 2008.
The Rays caught two key breaks in the ninth.
Pinch-hitter Clint Frazier hit what potentially could have been a tiebreaking homer to left field off Nuno. Instead, his fly ball hit a speaker attached to the catwalk, the ball came back into play and shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria made the catch.
Brett Gardner also nearly hit a tiebreaking homer, but his liner missed the seats by inches and went off the top of the right-center field wall for a double.
Both teams lost players to injuries in extra innings.
Tampa Bay reliever Jonny Venters injured his right hamstring covering first base on a bunt by Gardner in the 12th. New York lost Gary Sanchez when he suffered a groin injury trying to beat out a double play in the 10th after Stanton’s fifth hit.
Ryan Yarbrough (7-3) retired Austin Romine for the final out of the 12th with runners on first and third.
The Yankees were swept for the first time this season and dropped three straight games for the first time since Aug. 28-30, 2017 against the Cleveland Indians.
Stanton recorded his second career five-hit game with two singles, two doubles and his 19th homer on Nuno’s 1-2 curveball.
Before the late drama, Carlos Gomez hit an RBI double and run-scoring single in his first two at-bats. Jesus Sucre gave the Rays a 6-3 lead with a two-run double in the third.
Matt Duffy also contributed an RBI double in the first while Hechavarria homered.
Miguel Andujar hit a three-run homer and Didi Gregorius preceded Stanton’s RBI double with a run-scoring double.
Tampa Bay’s Matt Andriese started the game and allowed three runs on three hits in three-plus innings.
Domingo German turned in his shortest career start by allowing six runs and a career-worst nine hits in three-plus innings. German became the first Yankee to allowed at least six extra-base hits and six runs while pitching three innings or fewer since Mike Mussina on July 31, 2002.
—Field Level Media