MLB GAME RECAP

Yankees beat Sale behind Beltran three-run shot

Sports Xchange

September 24, 2015 at 10:11 pm.

Sep 24, 2015; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees right fielder Carlos beltran (36) is congratulated by designated hitter Alex Rodriguez (13) after hitting a three run home run against the Chicago White Sox in the third inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

Sep 24, 2015; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees right fielder Carlos beltran (36) is congratulated by designated hitter Alex Rodriguez (13) after hitting a three run home run against the Chicago White Sox in the third inning at Yankee Stadium. (Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports)

NEW YORK — Right fielder Carlos Beltran hit a three-run home run with one out in the bottom of the third inning off left-hander Chris Sale and the New York Yankees held on for a 3-2 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Thursday night.

The Yankees (84-68) won for the seventh time in their last 11 games while lowering their magic number to clinching a postseason berth to six. They also equaled last year’s win total while beating the White Sox at home for the ninth straight time.

Beltran made all those things possible with one swing off Sale (12-11). With runners at first and second following a walk to designated hitter Alex Rodriguez, Beltran hit a 2-2 fastball just far enough as his 18th home run landed in the glove of a fan sitting in the first row of the left field seats.

Beltran’s 10th home run in his last 47 games was the only time the Yankees capitalized on opportunities against Sale. They had a runner in five of seven innings but did not score.

The home run was just enough for the Yankees, who nearly squandered the three-run cushion in the late innings.

Right-hander Michael Pineda (12-8) took a shutout into the sixth but gave up a second-deck home run to rrookie right fielder Trayce Thompson to start the inning. Justin Wilson recorded the first two outs of the seventh but walked center fielder Adam Eaton and gave up a single to first baseman Jose Abreu.

After Abreu’s hit, Dellin Betances loaded the bases by walking left fielder Melky Cabrera. He walked in the second run when Thompson drew a free pass but Betances fanned designated hitter Adam LaRoche and got a double play in a scoreless eighth.

Andrew Miller pitched a scoreless ninth for his 35th save in 37 opportunities. He gave up a one-out single to Eaton but fanned Abreu on three pitches and finished it off two pitches later.

Pineda won his second straight start, allowing one run and eight hits in six innings. He struck out six without a walk and threw 70 of 89 pitches for strikes.

Sale lost his fourth consecutive start, allowing three runs and seven hits in seven innings. Sale struck out eight, increasing his total to 265, four shy off Ed Walsh’s team record set in 1908.

Pineda worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the third and the Yankees took a 3-0 lead in the bottom half. After center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury was called out because of interference on a fielder’s choice grounder by Chase Headley, designated hitter Alex Rodriguez walked, putting runners at first and second.

Beltran then sent a 2-2 fastball into the glove of a fan sitting in the first row of the left field seats. It was his 18th home run and New York’s 46th homer of at least three runs this season.

NOTES: The Yankees honored the memory of Hall of Famer Yogi Berra in a pregame ceremony and also pained his No. 8 on the field in front of both dugouts. “It’s been a tough couple of days for us,” New York manager Joe Girardi said of Berra, who passed away Tuesday night. “Yogi meant so much to the organization, to the city, to all of us. For me personally, I miss him. … Chicago 1B Adam LaRoche returned to the lineup after being out since Sept. 13 with patellar tendinosis in his right knee. … New York RHP Masahiro Tanaka (hamstring) was examined by team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad Thursday. The team did not have any further updates but Girardi said he would be surprised if Tanaka was not pitching sometime early next week. … Chicago 3B Mike Olt (right shoulder discomfort) was not in the starting lineup after getting injured Wednesday but manager Robin Ventura said he was available to pinch hit.

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