Athletics shut down Yankees bats for second straight game in 4-1 win

Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
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OAKLAND, Calif. – On paper, it looked like a major mismatch, with last-place Oakland sending out a couple of struggling starters against Aaron Judge and the powerful New York Yankees.

Instead, the Yankees ended up with five hits in a puzzling set of back-to-back losses.

Minor league call-up Adrian Martinez held New York hitless into the fifth inning and the Athletics beat Yankees 4-1 Sunday.

“This is the time of the year when it’s kind of a grind,” Judge said. “This team knows that. We got our butt kicked. We have to step up and respond.”

One night after the vaunted Yankees lineup managed one hit in 11 innings against Adam Oller and the Oakland bullpen, New York wasn’t much better against another starter who entered with an ERA above 6.00.

Martinez (3-3), called up from Triple-A before the game, allowed two walks and no other baserunners until Aaron Hicks‘ single with two outs in the fifth for New York’s second hit in an 18-inning span against the last-place A’s.

“We should be able to put together more offense,” manager Aaron Boone said. “We got to if we’re going to be the kind of team we expect to be. We have to do a better job.”

Kyle Higashioka added an RBI single in the fifth for the only run off Martinez, who allowed three hits in 5 1/3 innings.

New York managed just one more hit off the Oakland bullpen, with A.J. Puk getting three outs for his fourth save.

The strong pitching kept Judge stuck on 49 homers as he tries to become the 10th player in big league history with multiple seasons with at least 50 home runs. Judge went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts.

“You have to tip your cap sometimes,” Judge said. “They had some good pitchers over there who made pitches when they had to and kept us off balance the last couple of days.”

The A’s jumped on Clarke Schmidt (5-3) early in his second start of the season. Stephen Vogt, who hit a tying two-run homer in the 10th on Saturday, followed it up with an RBI double in the first and scored on Dermis Garcia‘s single.

Tony Kemp and Garcia added RBI singles in the third to make it 4-0.

That was more than enough for Martinez.

“When I saw Adrian last night, he had a big smile on his face,” manager Mark Kotsay said. “This kid just seems to feed off big environments or the Triple-A numbers don’t show how he’s able to go out and perform here. He did that today against one of the best lineups in the league.”

The win came after the A’s were officially eliminated from the AL West race with Houston’s win over Baltimore. This is the earliest Oakland has ever been eliminated from winning the division.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Yankees: LHP Anthony Banda was signed and added to the active roster to replace Aroldis Chapman, who went on the IL Saturday. Banda got two outs in his Yankees debut. … RHP Luis Gil was recalled and transferred to the 60-day IL. … Boone said LHP Zach Britton (Tommy John surgery) left his second second minor league rehab appearance in Florida on Saturday with cramping in his glute but is expected to make his next appearance in a few days. … LHP Chasen Shreve was assigned to the Yankees FCL roster.

Athletics: OF Ramon Laureano (left oblique) won’t join the team on the upcoming road trip. Laureano took a day off in his rehab work after feeling sore after running the bases Saturday. … OF Cristian Pache was also called up from Triple-A Las Vegas before the game and LHP Jared Koenig and INF David MacKinnon were optioned to the minors.

STREAKING

The A’s honored the 2002 team that won what was then an AL-record 20 straight games. Scott Hatteberg and Art Howe addressed the crowd prior to the game and Miguel Tejada threw the ceremonial first pitch to Hatteberg. More than a dozen players were in attendance.

“It bonded us and welded us as a club,” said Hatteberg, who hit a game-ending homer in the 20th win after the A’s blew an 11-run lead against Kansas City. “I see these guys and I look at them and it’s like I looked at them back then. We are a tight group now.”

UP NEXT

Yankees: RHP Frankie Montas (4-10, 3.84 ERA) will make his fifth start with the Yankees when New York opens a three-game series at the Los Angeles Angels.

Athletics: Oakland hits the road for a six-game trip starting Tuesday in Washington when Cole Irvin (6-11, 3.16 ERA) takes the mound looking to snap a personal four-game losing streak.

Braves sweep Mets, take 2-game lead in East with 3 remaining

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ATLANTA — Dansby Swanson and Matt Olson homered for the third straight game, Travis d'Arnaud hit a go-ahead two-run single in the third inning, and Atlanta Braves beat the New York Mets 5-3, completing a three-game sweep of their NL East rival and taking a two-game lead in the division with three games to play.

The defending World Series champion Braves have been chasing the Mets the entire season. In the final series of the season, any combination of one Atlanta win or one Mets loss would give the Braves their fifth straight division title.

New York plays its final three games of the season against worst-in-the-majors Washington. Atlanta closed out the regular season with a three-game set in Miami. Should the season end Wednesday in a tie, Atlanta would win the division after claiming the season series 10-9 with Sunday’s victory.

The Braves won five of the last six games in the series, outscoring the Mets 42-19 over that stretch. New York had a 10 1/2-game lead on June 1 but now is the lower in the standings than at any point this season.

It was a lost weekend for New York, which came to Atlanta hoping to clinch its first division title since 2015. Instead, aces Jacob deGrom and Max Scherzer lost Friday and Saturday before 15-game winner Chris Bassitt lasted just 2 2/3 innings on Sunday.

Swanson took Bassitt deep to right-center in the first with his 25th homer, and Atlanta took charge with a three-run third. Bassitt (15-9) issued a bases-loaded walk to Olson before d’Arnaud delivered a single up the middle to score Ronald Acuna Jr. and Austin Riley for a 4-3 lead. That chased Bassitt, who was charged with four runs, three hits and three walks.

Olson connected for his 33rd homer to make it 5-3 leading off the sixth, his 410-foot shot landing in the seats in right-center. Olson, in his first year with Atlanta, surpassed 100 RBIs for the second straight season.

Charlie Morton stranded runners on first and second in the first, but he gave up Daniel Vogelbach‘s 18th homer that tied it at 1 in the second. The righty struck out Francisco Lindor with runners on first and second to end the threat.

Jeff McNeil went deep off Morton in the third and Vogelbach followed with an RBI single to put the Mets up 3-1. Morton entered the game having allowed 28 homers, sixth-most in the NL.

Morton scuffled throughout his start, giving up three runs and nine hits in 4 1/3 innings as the 38-year-old made his first start since signing a $20 million, one-year contract to remain with Atlanta next season.

Dylan Lee (5-1) relieved Morton and pitched 1 1/3 innings, leaving after a walk to Brandon Nimmo with two outs in the sixth. Collin McHugh entered and struck out Francisco Lindor.

Raisel Iglesias faced four batters in the seventh, A.J. Minter faced the minimum in the eighth and closer Kenley Jansen converted his third save of the series with a clean ninth.

Jansen leads the NL with 40 saves in 47 chances.

The Braves’ bullpen, which posted a 1.70 ERA last month, pitched 8 2/3 scoreless innings the last two nights.

BIG NUMBERS

Atlanta leads the NL with 241 homers. And the Braves have their first 100-victory season since 2003.

TWO, DARN HOT

McNeil went 3 for 5 and has multiple hits in five straight games. His average is .326, one point behind the Dodgers’ Freddie Freeman for the NL batting title. In 23 career games at Truist Park, McNeil is hitting .395 with 12 runs, nine doubles, two homers, seven RBIs and four walks. … Jansen tied Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley for eighth place on the career list with 389. He’s also is the 10th closer to have four different seasons with at least 40 saves.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Mets All-Star RF Starling Marte (right middle finger fracture) has yet to begin swinging or throwing. … Braves 2B Ozzie Albies (broken right pinky finger) is still wearing a cast. … Braves RHP Spencer Strider still has not thrown as he gets treatment on a sore left oblique.

ATTENDANCE

The Braves drew 42,713 in their regular season finale, the club’s 42nd sellout of the season. Overall. that’s 3,129,931 for the season – and the most tickets sold since 2000. In 2019, the team’s last full season before the COVID-19 pandemic, Atlanta drew 2,655,100.

UP NEXT

Mets: RHP Carlos Carrasco (15-7, 3.95 ERA) will face Nationals RHP Cory Abbott (0-4, 5.11).

Braves: RHP Bryce Elder (2-3, 2.76 ERA) will face Marlins LHP Jesus Luzardo (3-7, 3.53).