CINCINNATI — The New York Yankees headed back home after a 6-1 trip, completing a three-game sweep with a 4-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds following a contentious series in Toronto.
“I think we learned a lot about ourselves this road trip,” Harrison Bader said after his go-ahead, two-run homer sparked a comeback in Sunday’s series finale against the Reds. “If we didn’t already know it prior to having stuff go a little sideways, have some high energy that was kind of away from the game of baseball, we learned it now.”
Gleyber Torres also homered as the Yankees extended a winning streak to four for the first time this season. The series against the Reds was relatively calm after a trip to Toronto that included allegations of sign stealing, Domingo Germán’s ejection for sticky substances and testy exchanges.
Luis Severino returned from a strained lat muscle that had sidelined him since spring training and allowed one run and four hits in 4 2/3 innings with five strikeouts and one walk. He threw 54 of 75 pitches for strikes and averaged 96.7 mph with 44 fastballs.
“I was finding the zone. Changeup was really good,” Severino said. “Got some swings on the breaking ball.”
Yankees manager Aaron Boone was ejected in the first inning and Reds manager David Bell in the eighth.
New York (29-20), which gave slugger Aaron Judge the day off, has won six of seven and 14 of 19, improving to a season-high nine games over .500.
Cincinnati has lost six of seven, dropping into last place in the NL Central.
In a game that started at 11:37 a.m., Severino opened with a four-pitch walk to Jonathan India and Spencer Speer hit a two-out fly down the right-field line that Jake Bauers nearly caught but allowed to bounce off his glove.
The ball was ruled foul by first base umpire Nestor Ceja but the call was overturned in a video review and India was allowed to score. Boone, angry because India slowed down between third and home, came out to argue and was ejected by plate umpire Emil Jimenez. Boone was ejected for the third time this season and 29th in his managerial career.
“I was just at first trying to get an explanation of why and they just say you can’t argue that,” Boone said. “I shouldn’t have gotten kicked out there because, in the end, I think it was probably right thing.”
Bell was tossed by Jimenez in the eighth for arguing the umpire’s failure to call a quick pitch on Wandy Peralta to Luke Maile. Bell’s ejection was his second of the series, third this season and 23rd of his career.
“I wasn’t able to get an explanation,” Bell said.
Albert Abreu (2-1) followed Severino and got four straight outs. Jimmy Cordero pitched a perfect seventh and Peralta a 1-2-3 eighth.
Cincinnati loaded the bases in the ninth against Clay Holmes on two hits and walk before Will Benson hit a game-ending comebacker. Holmes got his fifth save in seven chances, his first save since April 12.
New York’s relivers pitched 14 2/3 scoreless innings in the series and leads the major leagues with a 2.87 bullpen ERA.
“We’ve got some guys back, but we have been beat up,” Boone said after the Yankees completed a stretch of 33 games in 34 days.
Hunter Greene (0-4) remained winless in 10 starts this season and has allowed eight home runs. He gave up four runs, four hits and three walks in a season-high seven innings and matched his season high with 10 strikeouts.
Bader put the Yankees ahead with a two-run homer in the fifth with a drive over the left-field wall for his fourth homer, Torres added an opposite-field drive to right on a fastball in the sixth. Anthony Volpe added an RBI single in the seventh.
“Bader hit a changeup. Everyone knows I’m working on it but still had a lot of success with it in a lot of situations,.” Greene said.
Bauers went 0 for 2 with a walk and is 1 for 23 on the road. He is 7 for 17 at Yankee Stadium.
Reds: RHP Fernando Cruz (right shoulder strain) was sent to Triple-A Louisville on a rehab assignment on Sunday. He has games scheduled Monday, Wednesday and Friday. … INF Joey Votto (left shoulder, biceps surgery) was scheduled to take batting practice Sunday. … OF TJ Friedl (left oblique soreness) could be activated as early as Tuesday.
Yankees: RHP Gerrit Cole (5-0, 2.01) starts Tuesday’s homestand opener against Baltimore.
Reds: LHP Brandon Williamson (0-0, 1.59) starts Monday’s series opener against St. Louis and LHP Jordan Montgomery (2-6, 4.21). Williamson didn’t get a decision on May 16 at Colorado in his big league debut, allowing one run and two hits in 5 2/3 innings.