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Sánchez, Voit lift Yankees over Royals 6-5 in thriller

Thu Jun 24 1:36am ET
By RONALD BLUM
AP Baseball Writer

New York Yankees Luke Voit (59) reacts as as Kansas City Royals player leaves the field after hitting walk-off RBI single to give the Yankees a 6-5 win over the Royals in the bottom of the ninth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


Kansas City Royals manager Mike Matheny, left, greets Carlos Santana (41) at the dugout steps after Santana hit a solo home run off reliever Zach Britton during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the New York Yankees, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


Kansas City Royals Nicky Lopez (8) greets Whit Merrifield (15) at the dugout steps after Merrifield scored on Rynes O'Hearn's RBI infield single during the ninth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. The Yankees came back to win the game 6-5 in the bottom fo the ninth inning. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees relief pitcher Aroldis Chapman (54) reacts leaving the mound after pitching in the top of the ninth inning after blowing an opportunity to earn a save in a baseball game against the Kansas City Royals, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. Chapman was awarded the win when Yankees Luke Voit hit a game-winning, RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


Kansas City Royals relief pitcher Greg Holland (35) looks to the outfield as New York Yankees pinch runner Tyler Wade, left, heads home to score after Luke Voit's game-winning RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


Kansas City Royals center fielder Jarrod Dyson (1) watches as a fan holds the ball up after catching a game-tying, solo home run by New York Yankees Gary Sanchez during the ninth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees Gary Sanchez hits a game-tying solo home run in the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Kansas City Royals, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees Clint Frazier (77) celebrates with Rougned Odor after scoring on Odor's eighth-inning, two-run, home run in a baseball game against the Kansas City Royals, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees Luke Voit reacts as he watches his game-winning, ninth inning RBI single to defeat the Kansas City Royals 6-5 in a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. Royals catcher Sebastian Rivero, left, watches the ball's path. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees Luke Voit watches his ninth-inning, walk-off RBI single in the Yankees 6-5 win over the Kansas City Royals in a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


From left, New York Yankees Aaron Judge, Gio Urshela, Clint Frazier, and Rougned Odor, third from left, celebrate with Luke Voit after Voit hit a walk-off RBI single to give the Yankees a 6-5 win in the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Kansas City Royals, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees Luke Voit celebrates after hitting a game-winning, RBI single in the bottom fo the ninth allowing Tyler Wade to score in the Yankees 6-5 victory over the Kansas City Royals in a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees Luke Voit celebrates with Yankees Rougned Odor after hitting a ninth-inning, walk-off RBI single to defeat the Kansas City Royals 6-5 in a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


Kansas City Royals Carlos Santana (41) reacts crossing the plate after hitting a solo home run off New York Yankees relief pitcher Zack Britton during the eighth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees designated hitter Giancarlo Stanton reacts flying out to right field during the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Kansas City Royals, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees Clint Frazier watches his two-run double during the fourth inning of a baseball gam against the Kansas City Royals, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


Kansas City Royals right fielder Jorge Soler (12) chases down Clint Frazier's two-run double during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the New York Yankees, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees Aaron Judge prepares to hit a ball, which was caught in right field, during the third inning of a baseball game against the Kansas City Royals, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


New York Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez, center, stares ahead as Kansas City Royals Ryan O'Hearn (66) and Salvador Perez (13) celebrate after O'Hearn hit a two-run, home run during the first inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, June 23, 2021, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


NEW YORK (AP) Aroldis Chapman bent over sharply and cursed at himself after blowing a save with a four-pitch bases-loaded walk and falling behind on an infield single.

Just 13 minutes later, the closer and the rest of the Yankees were all smiles. Gary Sanchez's tying home run off Greg Holland and Luke Voit's winning single that landed inches from the top of the left-field fence sent them running onto the field with yet another late come-from-behind win.

''I need to get in the weight room. These last two games I keep hitting the top of the wall,'' Voit said with a chuckle after the Yankees beat the Kansas City Royals 6-5 Wednesday night in a game that see-sawed three times in the last two innings.

New York has won six of its last eight games, cutting a nine-game deficit in the AL East to 4 1/2 games behind first-place Boston ahead of the Yankees' first trip to Fenway Park this season. In five of the victories, the Yankees came from behind in the seventh inning or later.

New York came from behind three times Wednesday.

Ryan O'Hearn homered for the second straight day following his recall from the minors, putting Kansas City ahead with a two-run drive in the first off Michael King.

Clint Frazier tied the score in the fourth against Carlos Hernandez with a two-run, opposite-field double off the base of the manual scoreboard in the right-field wall, which due to the coronavirus has not been used since 2019.

Carlos Santana gave the Royals a 3-2 lead in the eighth with the first home run off Zack Britton since the 2019 AL Division Series only for Rougned Odor to hit a two-run homer in the bottom half against Jake Brentz.

Chapman (5-2) converted his first 11 save chances but has blown three of his last eight. He allowed a one-out single to Michael A. Taylor and a two-out bloop single to Whit Merrifield that put runners at the corners.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone went to the mound, then returned to the dugout and ordered an intentional walk to Santana.

''Probably not really what Chapman wanted to do there,'' Sanchez said.

Rookie Sebastian Rivero, a rookie who is 0 for 7 in his career and entered in the fourth inning after Salvador Perez took a foul tip off his mask, came up with the bases loaded. Chapman threw a fastball in the dirt, then bounced a slider into Sanchez's chest protector and then another fastball that sent dust flying. Chapman fired a fastball about a foot outside for a four-pitch walk and screamed.

On the very next pitch, O'Hearn checked his swing and hit a slow roller to third, just beating DJ LeMahieu's throw to first. When Chapman reached the dugout after Jarrod Dyson's inning-ending groundout, he slammed his glove.

But wait!

Aaron Judge struck out for the fourth time leading off the bottom half against Holland (2-3), who got his fifth save Tuesday night in the Royals' series-opening 6-5 win.

Sanchez lined a fastball into the left-field seats for his 12th homer, his seventh in his last 22 games.

''I pride myself in not making two-strike mistakes and that's what burned me with the first one,'' Holland said.

Giancarlo Stanton singled to right, pinch-runner Tyler Wade advanced on a wild pitch and up came Voit, who homered Tuesday in his return from the injured list but struck out three times Wednesday, stranding the bases loaded in the seventh.

Voit fouled off a pair of two-strike sliders and reached down for a curveball and turned it around at 105 mph, sending it 370 feet off the wall. Wade scored standing up with Voit's first game-ending hit in the majors and New York's sixth walk-off win this season.

''This is the type of win,'' Voit said, ''coming back twice and winning it in a big way, to get us back on a good hot streak and rolling into the second half of the season.''

Holland has blown four of nine save opportunities.

''That ball was supposed to be in the dirt,'' Holland said. ''I thought the pitch was pretty close to hitting the dirt, but it must not have been close enough.''

Kansas City walked 11 batters, its most since July 5, 2019, against Washington, and New York's most since April 9, 2017, at Baltimore. Danny Duffy lasted two innings and 42 pitches in his return from a left flexor strain that had sidelined him since May 12. Duffy walked three, as did Hernandez. Scott Barlow and Brentz walked two apiece, and Josh Staumont one.

''Hopefully,'' Boone said, ''we can continue to carry this.''

BOOS

Fans booed umpires when they checked King for banned foreign substances after the second inning.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Royals: Perez took a foul tip off the mask on Duffy's fifth pitch of the game, with LeMahieu leading off the first. The 31-year-old Perez, a six-time All-Star, has played in all 72 games this season. Metheny said he had a headache from the mask jamming his chin but was negative for a concussion.

Yankees: 3B Gio Urshela did not play, a day after he was hit in the left shin by Jake Brentz's pitch. The shin was swollen and sore.

UP NEXT

RHP Jameson Taillon (1-4, 5.59) is 0-2 in his last eight starts for the Yankees heading into Thursday's series finale. Kansas City has lost the last three starts of RHP Brad Keller (6-7, 6.34) after winning the prior five.

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