NEW YORK (AP) — Gleyber Torres homered twice and Giancarlo Stanton and Oswaldo Cabrera once each during a 10-run barrage in the first two innings and the New York Yankees routed the Tampa Bay Rays 10-4 Sunday to reopen a 5 1/2-game AL East lead.
New York built a 10-1 lead with a seven-run second inning and took two of three to finish a 5-2 homestand. The Yankees’ division lead, which stood at 15 1/2 games in early July, was down to 3 1/2 games after the second-place Rays won Friday’s series opener. New York romped in the final two games of the series by a combined 20-7.
After winning the season series against the Rays 11-8, the Yankees (85-56) have 21 games remaining: six against Boston, four vs. Texas, three each against Milwaukee, Toronto and Baltimore, and two against Pittsburgh — only the Blue Jays and Brewers have winning records.
Tampa Bay (78-60) has 24 games left: nine against Toronto, six against AL-best Houston plus three each against the Rangers, Boston and Cleveland.
With the Yankees wearing NYPD and FDNY caps on the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the game started after a 1-hour, 47-minute rain delay. Ten of New York’s first 14 batters reached, with Torres hitting a three-run homer in the first and a solo drive in the second, both off Luis Patiño (1-2).
Stanton hit an opposite-field, three-run homer to right in the second, going deep for the 26th time this season a day after hitting his first since July 15. Torres connected to cap a 10-pitch at-bat for his 21st homer this year and 12th career multihomer game. The Yankees have a team-record 15 sets of back-to-back homers this season.
Cabrera, playing his 23rd big league game, greeted Calvin Faucher with a two-run homer, an opposite-field drive to deep right.
Aaron Judge had a bases-loaded sacrifice fly and went 1 for 4, leaving him with 55 homers, 121 RBIs and a .307 batting average,
Domingo Germán started on three days’ rest as New York juggled because of Wednesday’s rainout but he was pulled after one inning and 14 pitches. Wandy Peralta (3-4), the third of eight pitchers, allowed one hit over 2 1/3 innings.
Pitiño (1-2) gave up nine runs, five hits and four walks in 1 1/3 innings his ERA rising to 8.10.
Germán received cheers when he ran to the bullpen to warmup while holding high an American flag in his right hand. Judge wore special cleats — the left said on the back — “9/11 Patriot Day” and the right “9 -11 – 01.” Manager Aaron Boone placed a wreath at the monument in Yankee Stadium’s Monument Park that was dedicated on the first anniversary of the attacks.
OF Aaron Hicks remained out of the starting lineup for the second straight day after getting benched midgame Friday following two failed catches. New York started the same batting order in consecutive games for only the second time this season, after Aug. 12-13 at Boston.
ON THE FARM
CF Jasson Domínguez homered from both sides of the plate Saturday night for Class A Hudson Valley at Wilmington.
Yankees: OF Harrison Bader, sidelined since June 26 by plantar fasciitis in his right foot, went 1 for 3 with an RBI single and stolen base as a DH for Double-A Somerset in his first game in the Yankees organization. LHP Aroldis Chapman (leg infection) struck out the side around a walk in the fourth, LHP Zack Britton (Tommy John surgery) struck out two in a 1-2-3 fifth and RHP Miguel Castro (strained right shoulder) pitched a perfect sixth. … 2B DJ LeMahieu (inflamed right second toe) hopes to return during the homestand from Sept. 20-25.
Yankees: RHP Gerrit Cole (11-7 3.20) starts a series opener at Boston on Tuesday on five days’ rest, opposed by RHP Nick Pivetta (9-11, 4.29).