Chris Stewart leads Yankees to Game 1 win over Blue Jays

Chris Stewart's home run gave the Yankees a win in Game 1 of Tuesday's doubleheader. Credit: Getty Images
Chris Stewart’s home run gave the Yankees a win in Game 1 of Tuesday’s doubleheader.
Credit: Getty Images

Chris Stewart’s primary job description is to guide pitchers through their outing by calling pitches and framing his glove in the strike zone.

But occasionally Stewart gets a chance to display his power bat.

Stewart hit a go-ahead three-run home run in the bottom of the sixth inning and the Yankees picked up an important victory by knocking off the Blue Jays, 8-4, in the opener of Tuesday’s day-night doubleheader.

“It’s not an every day thing,” Stewart said. “I don’t know, hell might freeze over now but it’s definitely nice to contribute at the plate. I try to do the job behind the plate first, take care of the pitchers first, but it was big I was able to drive those runs in.”

Stewart had hit the ball in the air in his previous two at-bats. He led off the third with a fly out to center field and made the final out of the fourth with a fly ball to right field.

In the sixth, the Yankees had first and second after Alex Rodriguez singled and Jayson Nix drew a two-out walk from reliever Neil Wagner. Wagner then failed to locate a 2-1 fastball and Stewart crushed it into the left field seats.

“I’m trying to look fastball at all times and kind of adjust after that,” Stewart said. “If they make a good breaking ball pitch, tip your hat to them, but I’m not going to go up there looking for anything special. I’ve got guys who can drive the runs in. Fortunately he gave me a good pitch to hit and I hit it.”

“It’s a huge at-bat,” manager Joe Girardi said. “That changed the game.”

It was Stewart’s fourth home run this year but first in 174 at-bats since May 15 against Seattle.

“It’s huge,” Stewart said. “I’m not a home-run hitter obviously. I’m just happy that those runs were able to be driven in. I’m not necessarily trying to hit a homer there but I got a pitch and put a good swing on it.”

Stewart’s rare power display lifted the Yankees to their seventh win nine games, though that stretch has done little to make a dent in the wild card standings.

It also came on somewhat of a milestone afternoon for the Yankees.

Robinson Cano did the rest of the heavy lifting for the lineup by going 4-for-4 with four RBIs. Three of those RBI came on a drive to straightaway center field that made him the 16th Yankee to reach 200 career home runs.

Ichiro Suzuki scored on those hits and is now within one hit of reaching 4,000 combined in Japan and in the major leagues. He had a double in the third and opened the seventh with a single.

Ichiro had a chance in the eighth for the milestone but made the final out of the inning with a groundout to first.

Besides using his bat for his eighth-career home run in 233 games, Stewart also guided Ivan Nova through 6 1/3 innings and Shawn Kelley through a long at-bat with the bases loaded in the seventh.

Follow Yankees beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @LarryFleisher.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Drive charged in fatal hit and run, police…

The NYPD has arrested a man they say is responsible for a fatal hit and run in Manhattan last weekend. Doohee Cho, 33, was hit…

Local

Mayor de Blasio raises minimum wage for some…

Mayor Bill de Blasio signed an executive order Tuesday morning that will raise the minimum wage for workers employed by private companies that receive more…

National

3 myths about the working poor

Linda Tirado works to debunk some common stereotypes about the working poor in her new book, "Hand to Mouth."

Money

Lawsuit funding advances: friend or foe?

Reporter was commissioned to write this in-depth article Many plaintiffs awaiting resolution of their lawsuit or legal claim often find themselves in a tricky financial…

Going Out

Which NYC restaurant lost its three-star Michelin rating?

A record 73 restaurants in New York City collected coveted Michelin stars on Tuesday as a mix of trendy spots and fine-dining stalwarts underscored the…

Entertainment

Interview: Metro chats with filmmaker Meir Kalmanson, man…

A New York filmmaker hands out smiles to its residents.

Television

TV watch list, Tuesday, Sept. 30: 'Selfie,' 'Utopia'…

'Selfie' This modern day take on the "My Fair Lady" story stars John Cho in the Henry Higgins role. Perhaps instead of "the rain in…

Music

Can't-miss weekend events continue to attract the masses

Reporter was commissioned to write this in-depth article Earlier this summer, the Firefly Music Festival drew crowds of tens of thousands of people to Dover, Delaware.…

MLB

Mets 2014 report card

The Mets wrapped up their eight straight season without a playoff appearance last weekend. Needless to say, they fell a bit short of general manager…

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Cowboys, Packers, Ravens, Chargers climb

NFL Power Rankings: Cowboys, Packers, Ravens, Chargers climb

NFL

Ryan Quigley making a big impact for Jets…

Ryan Quigley, now in his second year as the Jets punter, had an exceptional afternoon with six punts for an average of 51.7 yards per punt.

NFL

3 positives to take from Jets loss to…

The Jets suffered another loss Sunday — 24-17 to the Lions — but the reason why it hurts so much for Jets fans is that…

Style

Products that support breast cancer awareness and research

Asics GT-1000, $100 Asics’ third pink collection in collaboration with Christina Applegate’s Right Action for Women includes this pink-accented version of its best-selling GT-1000 3…

Wellbeing

Dr. Marisa Weiss: Where we stand on breast…

As an oncologist and a survivor herself, Dr. Marisa Weiss knows the urgency felt by those diagnosed with breast cancer. Genetic testing has accelerated the…

Wellbeing

Bees' stingers hold new hope for cancer cure

A promising new lead in the search for a cancer cure has turned up in a place that most people naturally avoid. A team from…

Home

Emily Henderson on small space design

Design expert Emily Henderson shows us how to upgrade our cramped quarters.