Blue Jays get to New York's bullpen in win over Yankees
Darwin Barney knocks in two runs, makes stellar catch in foul territory
Darwin Barney took a step toward establishing himself as a useful part of the Blue Jays roster both in the field and at the plate.
"You hit your way to the big leagues," Barney said following Toronto's 4-1 win Tuesday over the New York Yankees.
Filling in for the injured Troy Tulowitzki at shortstop, the infielder hit a two-run single and made an impressive sliding catch near the wall in shallow right field to get an out in foul territory.
"I practice that without practicing that," Barney said. "I honestly didn't peek at the wall, I just tried to make a catch and trust my instinct on that one and luckily I didn't blow my knee out or anything."
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Kevin Pillar singled home the go-ahead run in the seventh inning to help the Jays beat the Yankees 4-1 Tuesday for New York's fifth loss in seven games.
Pillar brought the 33,419 fans in attendance to their feet with a diving catch in the outfield on a fly ball hit by Austin Romine to end the fourth inning. The standing ovation continued as Pillar trotted off the field and into Toronto's dugout.
"A ball like that that's hit in the gap is a safer bet to go after, knowing there's a guy behind you," said Pillar.
On the mound, J.A. Happ delivered six solid innings of one-run ball, surrendering only four hits and two walks while punching out three Yankees.
"I think he pitched really good. The first inning was a battle for him ... but he got through it," said Jays manager John Gibbons.
Yankees starter C.C. Sabathia gave up two earned runs in six innings of work and recorded four strikeouts.
"He pitched a really good game tonight and again we weren't able to score," said Yankees manager Joe Girardi.
The Yankees dropped to 24-27 this season while the Blue Jays improved to 28-26, five games back of the Boston Red Sox, who lead the division with a 32-20 record.
Justin Smoak homered as the Blue Jays won for the 12th time in 16 meetings with the Yankees. The second straight win secured a home series victory for the Jays over their American League East rival. It also handed the Yankees their fifth loss in seven games.
"The guys in the room have to get it done," Girardi added. "It's been a struggle for most of the year."
New York sent Dellin Betances out to the mound for the seventh inning and Toronto's bats were able to score two runs on him to bolster their lead.
"Betances got out there and we strung some hits together," said Gibbons.
"If somebody leaves a runner on, I'm trying my best to get them out without them scoring," Betances said. "[Sabathia] pitched a great game, he's been awesome all year."
Sabathia remarked that nine times out of ten, New York's bullpen trio of Betances, Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman will pull through unscathed. On this night, that wasn't the case for Betances.
"It's always surprising when these guys give up runs," Sabathia said.
"Those guys aren't going to be perfect," Girardi noted. "They're really, really good at what they do, but they're not going to be perfect."
Joe Biagini and Jesse Chavez pitched a scoreless inning each before closer Roberto Osuna entered the game to earn his 12th save of the season.
Toronto's victory came on the same evening when the team announced they had acquired veteran right-handed reliever Jason Grilli and cash from the Atlanta Braves in exchange for minor league pitcher Sean Ratcliffe.
Grilli is expected to join the team for the final game of the series Wednesday at the Rogers Centre.
With files from The Associated Press, The Canadian Press