AP Sports Writer
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Gary Sanchez hit a three-run homer, Chris Carter added a two-run shot and CC Sabathia got back on track as the New York Yankees rolled to a 7-1 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday night.
Pitching on six days’ rest, Sabathia (3-2) went 6 2/3 shutout innings to win for the first time since April 15. He struck out five and walked two before leaving with the bases loaded, but Tyler Clippard promptly fanned Whit Merrifield to escape the jam.
Clippard also handled the eighth before Jonathan Holder gave up a run in the ninth.
Sanchez drilled an 0-1 pitch from Jason Hammel (1-5) to center field with nobody out in the third, and Carter pounded a 1-1 pitch to almost the same place with two down in the fourth.
Jacoby Ellsbury and Matt Holliday also drove in runs against the Royals’ bullpen, part of a 13-hit outburst that sent the Yankees to their ninth win in the last 11 meetings with Kansas City.
It was another dismal night for Hammel, who allowed seven runs over seven innings in his last start against Tampa Bay. The right-hander yielded five runs on nine hits and a walk in six innings this time, and has served up six home runs in his last four outings.
Meanwhile, Sabathia was getting plenty of help from his defense.
Alcides Escobar twice lined out to third baseman Chase Headley, including a hot shot leading off the game. Carter made a couple of nifty plays at first base, and left fielder Brett Gardner threw out Jorge Soler in the fifth inning as he tried to stretch a single.
The Yankees’ dominant pitching and defense came after the Royals had won three one-run games in a sweep of Baltimore, capped by a season-best 14 hits in the finale on Sunday.
Kansas City had won four straight and six of seven.
SILENCE FOR STEVE
There was a moment of silence before the game for Steve Palermo, the umpire whose career ended when he was shot trying to break up a robbery in 1991. Palermo, who lived in the Kansas City area, died last weekend at age 67. He had been ill with cancer.
Royals RHP Ian Kennedy will throw a bullpen Wednesday and hopes to make his next start Saturday. Kennedy has been dealing with a strained right hamstring.
Yankees RHP Michael Pineda tries to keep rolling when he gets the ball Wednesday night on five days’ rest. Pineda is 3-1 with a 2.63 ERA over his last six outings, while New York has won five of his last six starts.
Royals LHP Jason Vargas makes his ninth career start against the Yankees, still searching for his first win. He is 5-1 with a 1.01 ERA this season, but 0-5 with a 6.53 ERA vs. New York.
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