BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — Gary Sánchez and the slumping New York Yankees lost their fifth in a row Tuesday night and fell for the 15th time in 20 games, again failing to get clutch hits in a 2-1 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays.
Hours after general manager Brian Cashman tried to change his team’s fortunes with a pregame address, the Yankees continued to struggled.
At 21-21, the Yankees are at .500 or worse in September for the first time since 1995. Missing injured stars Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton and more, they began the day tied with Houston for the last two spots in the expanded playoff field during the pandemic-shortened 60-game season.
Jonathan Davis homered in his first at-bat of the season and the Blue Jays won their third straight game, a day after beating the Yankees 12-7.
Making his first start of the season after being recalled from Toronto’s alternate training site Monday, Davis connected for his first homer on a 2-2 pitch from J.A. Happ in the second. The outfielder had played parts of the last two seasons with the Blue Jays.
Shun Yamaguchi (2-3) allowed one run in two innings of relief to earn the win. A.J. Cole and Anthony Kay each pitched one scoreless inning, and Rafael Dolis finished for his third save in as many opportunities.
Sánchez returned to the lineup after being benched the previous two games and went 0 for 4 with a strikeout. Sánchez is stuck in a 3-for-32 funk that has dropped his batting average to .125.
Sánchez also dropped a foul popup for an error.
After stranding seven runners through the first four innings, New York got on the board when Luke Voit singled and scored on Mike Tauchman’s sacrifice fly in the fifth. Sanchez struck out to strand two more.
Happ (1-2) struck out a season-best 10 and walked two in 6 1/3 innings, allowing two runs and four hits. The left-hander is 0-3 in his past four starts against his former team.
Toronto first baseman Rowdy Tellez was replaced for a pinch hitter in the eighth after appearing to injure his right leg or foot chasing a foul pop up in the top half.
Blue Jays right-hander Taijuan Walker pitched around five walks in four scoreless innings. Walker loaded the bases with three straight two-out walks in the first, but Tauchman flied out on a 3-1 pitch to end the threat.
Yankees: Judge (strained calf) and Stanton (strained hamstring) both ran on the field during workouts Tuesday. “They’ve both had a good few days here,” manager Aaron Boone said. “I don’t have a timetable but I do feel we’re inching closer to starting to get really ramped up.”
Blue Jays: OF Teoscar Hernandez will undergo a second MRI exam Wednesday. … SS Bo Bichette (sprained right knee) had five at-bats as DH in an intrasquad game Monday at Toronto’s alternate training site. Bichette was scheduled to play the field Tuesday. … RHP Ken Giles (forearm) threw a live batting practice session Tuesday. He is eligible to come off the 45-day injured list Friday.
New York RHP Deivi Garcia (0-1, 3.38) starts against Blue Jays RHP Tanner Roark (2-1, 5.74) in Wednesday’s series finale. Garcia took the loss in the second game of last Friday’s doubleheader against Baltimore. Roark is 1-1 in two career starts against the Yankees.
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