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Yankees 5, Angels 1: Sanchez homers again; Cessa strong in first start

The kids continue to be alright.

New York Yankees v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

The Yankees jumped on the Angels in the first inning Saturday night and never trailed in the game. Their win ensured that they’d take the series against Los Angeles, and set the Yankees up to try for the sweep on Sunday.

Luis Cessa was very good in his first career start, pitching six+ shutout innings. He allowed three hits and a walk while striking out five batters. He looked every bit like he belonged as a member of the Yankees’ rotation. Tyler Clippard and Tommy Layne followed out of the bullpen.

Clippard nearly allowed a two run homer to C.J. Cron before Brett Gardner had to jump almost into the crowd to track down the ball. The outfield wall in that section of the stadium is very low, and Gardner nearly jumped over it to catch the ball among the fans. It was a pretty sensational pitch to save Clippard’s bacon.

Young hitters were on display again tonight, driving in the majority of New York’s runs. Gary Sanchez got the scoring started with a two-out solo home run in the first inning off Ricky Nolasco. It was, amazingly, Sanchez’s sixth home run this season. He also threw a laser to first base to get a runner leaning. He has made such an impact at the plate as well as behind it.

Not to be out-done by Sanchez, Aaron Judge drove in two Yankees runs in the sixth inning to make it 5-0. His single brought home Starlin Castro and Brian McCann, who had two hits each in the game. McCann drove in the other two runs of the night with a single in the first inning. Judge also worked a walk in the game, showing off some good patience at the plate.

McCann stole a base. Just going to leave that here.

Dellin Betances came on to work the ninth in a non-save situation, and was greeted rudely on the first pitch by an Albert Pujols home run. It was well and truly crushed, ruining the shutout. It was the first home run allowed by Betances since May 1st. Dellin was able to recover and retire the next three batters in a row.

With the win and Baltimore’s loss, the Yankees move four games back of the Orioles for the second AL Wild Card spot. It’s a tall mountain to climb, but not an impossible one. The Yankees certainly control their own fate with a good number of division games left to play. One of the teams they must jump if they wish to make the playoffs, the Mariners, is up next on the schedule.

New York wraps up the series against the Angels tomorrow afternoon at at 3:35 pm with Chad Green getting the start for the Yankees against Jhoulys Chacin of Los Angeles.