KANSAS CITY, Mo. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Yankees radio announcer John Sterling likes to say “Voit hits one to Detroit” when the big slugger launches a home run. On Saturday, Luke Voit almost sent one to the distant state during New York’s doubleheader opener in Kansas City.
The 28-year-old blasted a go-ahead homer in the seventh inning that traveled 470 feet as the Yankees won their sixth game in a row, beating the Kansas City Royals 7-3.
Friday night’s game was postponed because of severe thunderstorms, forcing the split twin-bill.
J.A. Happ (4-3) threw six strong innings, striking out 10. He allowed only a single hit until a familiar problem showed up in the sixth when Whit Merrifield hit a tying, three-run homer. It was the 14th homer Happ has allowed, tied for second most in the majors.
Happ has not been able to find any kind of consistency in 2019, as his longball issue his inflated his ERA to 5.09 in 11 starts. His 10 strikeouts were a season-high; the 36-year-old had not had more than 7 in a start until Saturday.
Voit quickly restored the Yankees’ lead when he hit his two-run homer that cleared Kauffman Stadium’s famous fountains and landed on the grass hill beyond the bleachers. Voit also singled and scored in the first inning, scoring from first base on Clint Frazier’s two-run double.
Thairo Estrada added some insurance in the eighth with a double into the right field corner that scored Brett Gardner and Frazier. Gardner had three hits and scored twice.
Adam Ottavino and Luis Cessa combined to throw three scoreless innings in relief of Happ.
The Yankees recalled Chance Adams Saturday to serve as New York’s 26th player in Game 2 of the doubleheader. Adams threw three scoreless innings in a 13-5 win over Tampa Bay on May 19, his only appearance this season.
The Royals and Yankees will play Game 2 of their doubleheader Saturday night with a first pitch scheduled for 8:15 p.m. Jorge Lopez (0-5) will start for Kansas City while New York has yet to name a starter.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)