The Yankees won a wild one this Sunday afternoon in the Bronx, giving them their sixth win in a row overall, and a three-game weekend sweep of the Chicago White Sox. After seeing pinch-hitter Andrew Vaughn homer to tie the game in the top of the ninth for Chicago, the Yankees returned fire in the bottom of the ninth when Aaron Judge drew a one-out bases-loaded walk against Liam Hendriks to force in the winning run.
The Yankees got things going in their half of the first inning when, after several mentions on the YES Network’s broadcast about Dallas Keuchel’s defensive prowess, he predictably booted a ball hit back to him, allowing Luke Voit to reach on an error. Judge followed with a single, then with two outs Gleyber Torres came through with yet another clutch hit, scoring both Voit and Judge, and giving the Yankees a 2-0 lead.
After a few quiet innings, New York simultaneously tacked on a run in the bottom of the fifth and missed a huge opportunity to break the game open. DJ LeMahieu led off the frame with a single, then Keuchel lost the zone somewhat, issuing back-to-back walks to Voit and Judge. It must be noted, home plate umpire Jim Reynolds made a few great non-strike calls during the Judge at-bat, especially on the 3-0 “automatic strike” count.
Facing new Chicago pitcher Evan Marshall, the Yankees could only muster one run from the bases loaded, nobody out situation, however. Gio Urshela hit into a 5-4-3 double play on Marshall’s first pitch, and Torres followed with an inning-ending strikeout.
The White Sox and their reigning MVP struck back quickly in the top of the sixth inning. Wandy Peralta, in relief of starter Jameson Taillon, issued a one-out walk to Yoán Moncada that was promptly followed by a 450-foot blast over the left-center field wall by José Abreu, which cut the Yankees’ lead to one run. That was the end of the day for Peralta, as Yankees’ manager Aaron Boone went to Chad Green who got the final two outs of the inning — one on a fantastic running catch by LeMahieu in shallow right field, up the first baseline.
It didn’t take long for the Yankees to get the run right back, however. New White Sox pitcher José Ruiz issued a leadoff walk to Gary Sánchez and allowed a one-out single to Clint Frazier. Brett Gardner then followed with a soft grounder back to Ruiz that looked like the start of an inning-ending double play, but after receiving Ruiz’s throw for the force out at second base, Chicago shortstop Tim Anderson threw wide of first and into the Yankees’ dugout. The error not only allowed Gardner to reach safely but allowed Sánchez to score, extending the Yankees’ lead to 4-2.
After a seventh-inning home run by Yasmani Grandal that cut the Yankees lead to one run and made Yankee fans a little uncomfortable, the White Sox made matters even worse in the ninth. Against Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman, La Russa sent Andrew Vaughn up to pinch-hit for Adam Eaton with one out. Vaughn did the very highly improbable and sent a drive over the right center field wall for a game-tying solo shot — the first earned run allowed by Aroldis Chapman allowed all season.
Entering the bottom of the ninth tied at four, Frazier led off with a single and a stolen base. After a Brett Gardner strikeout, and an intentional walk to LeMahieu, Tyler Wade — who had been inserted for defensive purposes — beat out an infield single to load the bases for Judge. La Russa summoned Hendriks to face Judge and gave the fans a classic power versus power matchup with the game on the line. Fortunately for the Yankees, the drama didn’t last too long, as Hendriks had little control, and issued the game-ending walk on five pitches.
The win gave the Yankees the weekend sweep and was their sixth in a row overall. The team has captured eight of their last nine series, with a split four-game set against Baltimore being the only blemish across the unbeaten streak. They’ll have the day off tomorrow as they get ready to host the Blue Jays Tuesday night.