By BEN WALKER AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) _ Sonny Gray outpitched Jacob deGrom, Jacoby Ellsbury and Gary Sanchez homered, and the New York Yankees held off the Mets 5-4 Tuesday night to sweep both Subway Series games in the Bronx.
Despite another late stumble by closer Aroldis Chapman, the Yankees kept the Empire State Building lit up in pinstripes with the win. The Mets will try to change the color scheme to blue and orange when the rivalry now shifts to Citi Field for two games beginning Wednesday night.
Gray (7-7) earned his first win in three starts since being traded from Oakland to a playoff contender. He blanked the Mets on four singles until the seventh inning, when he issued a leadoff walk and rookie Dominic Smith followed with his first major league homer.
Making his Yankee Stadium debut for his new team, Gray left to a nice ovation as reliever Tommy Kahnle was summoned.
Chapman gave up an infield single to pinch-hitter Jose Reyes and a two-run homer by rookie Amed Rosario in the ninth, then got two more outs for his 16th save in 20 chances. In his previous appearance, he blew a ninth-inning chance Sunday night and took the loss against AL East-leading Boston.
After throwing his last pitch in this one, Chapman grimaced as he broke to cover first base for the final out and came up hobbling a bit at the end of the play.
DeGrom (13-6) gave up more than four earned runs for the first time in 12 starts. The righty exited after Sanchez hit a long sacrifice fly in the eighth, and showed no ill effects from a line drive to the pitching arm that finished his last outing.
DeGrom made his 100th big league appearance, all of them starts for the Mets. He made his debut in 2014 against the Yankees, and the first hit he allowed that night was a double by Ellsbury.
This time, Ellsbury lined a two-run drive into the right-field seats for a 3-0 lead in the fourth.
Sanchez opened the sixth with his 21st homer, topping his total from last year’s rookie season. He connected for the second straight night against the Mets, and has four homers in seven games.
Yankees star Aaron Judge was presented a WWE championship belt by wrestling stars Braun Strowman, Big Cass and Alexa Bliss a couple of hours before the game, in recognition of winning the All-Star Home Run Derby last month in Miami. “Wear it up to the plate tonight,” suggested Yankees fan Cass, a few inches taller than the 6-foot-7 Judge. “I might have to,” the rookie slugger said. Judge returned the favor, giving the trio customized Yankees jerseys. Strowman is on the card Sunday for the popular SummerSlam event in Brooklyn. His father was a heralded slo-pitch softball hitter and the brawny Braun said he’d launched some long home runs, too. “I’ve hit a couple of creatures in my day,” he said.
Todd Frazier’s bat slipped out of his hands on a swing in the eighth and helicoptered past Mets third baseman Wilmer Flores. The bat landed directly on the chalk foul line, and umpire Todd Tichenor playfully signaled fair.
Mets: RHP Noah Syndergaard threw 20 pitches off the bullpen mound before the game and later said “this is the best I’ve ever felt.” It was his first time on a mound since tearing his lat on April 30. … RHP Matt Harvey (shoulder) is set for his second rehab outing Wednesday for Class A Brooklyn. He threw 18 pitches in his first outing. … RHP Jeurys Familia is set to pitch Wednesday for Class A St. Lucie. It will be his first rehab appearance since having surgery for a blood clot in his shoulder.
Yankees: LHP CC Sabathia (knee inflammation) will throw another bullpen Wednesday and if he’s OK, he could start this weekend at Boston. … 1B Greg Bird (ankle surgery) will play five innings Wednesday at Triple-A on his first rehab assignment. … Injured stars Starlin Castro and Matt Holliday both ran the bases before the game.
Mets: RHP Robert Gsellman (hamstring) will come off the disabled list to start vs. the Yankees on Wednesday night at Citi Field. He was 5-5 with a 6.16 ERA when he was injured in late June. He’ll pitch in place of RHP Seth Lugo, who was put on the 10-day DL with a right shoulder impingement.
Yankees: LHP Jaime Garcia is 1-1 with a 5.82 ERA in two starts for the Yankees. He is a combined 5-8 with a 4.50 ERA this year in 21 starts for Atlanta, Minnesota and New York.
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