Volpe connects HR and LeMahieu decides for the Yankees who beat Toronto 3-2

The most recent showdown between Gerrit Cole and Alek Manoah morphed into the newest chapter in the beginning of Anthony Volpe’s storybook.

Cole and Manoah pitched scoreless after a joyous buildup, and the New York Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 on Saturday on pinch-hitter DJ LeMahieu’s bases-loaded single in the ninth inning.

Volpe hit a two-run homer in the eighth off Yimi Garcia and pinch hitter Danny Jansen hit a two-run homer in the ninth off Wandy Peralta after a walk to lead off Alejandro Kirk. Anthony Rizzo hit a double off Jordan Romano (2-1) early in the bottom half.

The intrigue began even before the first release. Just as Cole was about to start the game, he was forced to wait, crouching behind the mound as Manoah and Kirk walked slowly from the Blue Jays bullpen down the left-field line to the dugout.

"I did not realize"Cole said.

Cole allowed four hits in 5 2/3 innings with four strikeouts and two walks, extending his scoreless streak to 20 2/3 innings and lowering his ERA to 0.79.

Manoah allowed two hits in seven innings with five strikeouts and one walk, lowering his ERA from 6.98 to 5.13.

“Kind of old-school baseball,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said. “It was who was going to blink first and actually neither of them did.”

On Aug. 21, Manoah threw an inside pitch early in the game that sailed close to Yankees star Aaron Judge and then hit Judge on the arm guard above the left elbow. Judge looked at Manoah as Cole started to yell and a few other Yankees came up to the dugout railing. Cole was intercepted by bench coach Carlos Mendoza before reaching the referees.

“I think if Gerrit wants to do something, he can pass the Audi sign next time,” Manoah said, referring to the banner stamped on the grass between the Yankees’ dugout and the first-base line.

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Asked in November on NBA player Serge Ibaka’s YouTube show "How hungry are you?"“Who is the worst cheater in baseball history, Manoah replied: “Gerrit Cole. He cheated. He used a lot of sticky stuff to improve his shooting. Somehow they called it.”

Neither Cole nor Manoah referred to their past Saturday, though Cole did praise Manoah’s performance.

“Obviously Alek was on his game today,” Cole said. “He pitched terrific.”

Manoah has a 1.17 ERA in five appearances at Yankee Stadium, where he earned his major league debut by pitching six scoreless innings of two-hit ball on May 27, 2021.

“Like I’ve said all weekend, we don’t face each other, I don’t get in the box against him, he doesn’t get in the box against me,” Manoah said.

Volpe homered a pitch after Oswald Peraza singled for the Yankees’ third hit. After running around the bases, the 5-foot-9 Volpe jumped up to hit forearms with 6-foot-7 slugger Aaron Judge.

Garcia and Kirk called time to go over their signals, giving the 22-year-old Volpe a chance to come off the bench for a curtain call.

“It was pretty crazy,” Volpe said. “He really didn’t know what was going on. He didn’t want to assume she’d get out or anything like that. Once they told me to do it, he was great.”

Jansen hit his first pinch-hit home run and the first tying home run for the Blue Jays in the ninth inning or later since John Mayberry Jr.’s on September 14, 2014.

Jimmy Cordero (1-0) had George Springer hit a late-inning double play in the top of the ninth for his first win since 2020. New York improved to 11-0 this year while facing a series loss. .

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