Gary Sánchez and the New York Yankees spent much Sunday, the entire weekend really, admiring balls flying out of Camden Yards.
Sánchez hit three of the Yankees’ seven home runs, their most on the road in more than a half-century, and New York routed Baltimore 15-3 Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.
“Opportunity knocks for some guys,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “Other guys need to play well and step up their game. That’s nice to see.”
Clint Frazier homered twice and had four hits, a day after hitting a go-ahead three-run drive for his first big league homer since July 2017. Austin Romine and Gleyber Torres also went deep for the Yankees, who got back above 500 at 5-4.
New York’s first 18 runs of the series scored on homers, and the Yankees hit 14 over the three games, a record in a three-game series at Baltimore. New York had not hit seven homers on the road since May 30, 1961, at Boston, when Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris and Moose Skowron hit two each, and Yogi Berra had one.
“Never too much for us,” Boone said about the homers.
New York has won eight straight games at Camden Yards, its longest winning streak against the Orioles on the road.
Sánchez had 33 homers and was an All-Star in 2017 but hit just 18 in an injury slowed 2018, when he was in a season-long slump. He set a career-best for homers, hitting two-run drives in the third off David Hess (1-1), in the seventh against Mike Wright and the eighth off Dan Straily, who made his Orioles debut. The 26-year-old Sánchez, who saw just nine pitches, has six homers this season and 11 multihomer games in his short career, the most for a big leaguer in his first 274 games.
“I feel good at the plate right now — making adjustments, controlling the zone,” Sánchez said through a translator. “When things are going well, you’re going to feel more calm. And right now I’m hitting the ball well and playing nice defense.”
Frazier, who missed most of last season after sustaining a concussion in spring training, set a career best for hits. His RBI single in the sixth drove in the Yankees’ first run of the series that did not score on a homer.
Domingo German (2-0) retired his first 13 batters before Rio Ruiz walked in the fifth and did not allow a hit until Hanser Alberto singled with one out in the sixth. German allowed his first two batters to reach in the seventh, then was replaced. He gave up two runs, one hit and two walks, down from five walks in his first start, when he allowed one hit over five innings against Detroit.
New York won its 2,000th game since Brian Cashman became general manager before the 1998 season.
Hess pitched 6 1/3 innings hitless innings at Toronto last Monday and was removed after 82 pitches. He allowed four runs and five hits in five innings.
“I think going out there and giving up three home runs in the first few innings like that, that’s tough to come back as a team, so I think a lot of that’s on my shoulders,” Hess said.
Straily, signed Friday, allowed five runs and five hits over 1 1/3 innings. He was released by Miami late in spring training.
Alberto, an infielder, became the 10th Orioles position player to pitch. He allowed two runs, one hit and a pair of walks in the ninth.
“Alberto picked us up big time,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said. “Unfortunately, those things happen throughout the season. You hope it’s a rare occurrence.”
Baltimore’s Chris Davis was 0 for 4 with two strikeouts. He is 0 for 23 with 13 strikeouts this season and is hitless in 44 at-bats since Sept. 14, two shy of the record for a position player, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Eugenio Velez went hitless in his final 46 at-bats of the 2011 season, one more than the previous mark shared by Pittsburgh’s Bill Bergen (1909), Dave Campbell of San Diego and St. Louis (1973) and Milwaukee’s Craig Counsell (earlier in 2011).
Yankees: LHP CC Sabathia made his fourth and final minor league start Sunday for Class A Tampa, allowing a run and one hit with six strikeouts over 4 2/3 innings and throwing 63 pitches. Sabathia said feels better physically since he had a stent inserted into his heart in December because of the blockage of an artery. He is likely to make his first start of the season for the Yankees against the Chicago White Sox on Saturday.
“I just told the trainer, ‘I should have got the stent put in five years ago,'” Sabathia said. “I feel great. Just had no symptoms so I didn’t know what was going on. I feel incredible since all that happened.”
Yankees: RHP Masahiro Tanaka (1-0, 1.46) starts the series opener Monday in Houston. Tanaka is 0-2 with an 8.87 ERA in five appearances against the Astros.
Orioles: RHP Andrew Cashner (1-1, 5.40 ERA) makes his third start of the season Monday against Oakland.