NEW YORK -- These Yankees were constructed to crush homers, and they have now done so for 27 consecutive games, earning a spot in Major League history.
Aaron Hicks parked a three-run homer into the right-field seats and Giancarlo Stanton cleared the loading dock in left-center field for his first blast of the season as the Yankees outlasted the Blue Jays, 10-8, on Monday evening at Yankee Stadium.
"It's kind of what we do, we hit home runs here," Hicks said. "That's kind of how we score runs. We're in a great spot right now. We're scoring runs. We're doing it as a team, which is huge. Top to bottom is doing damage and that's what we need."
By slugging at least one home run in 27 consecutive contests, the Yankees have equaled the 2002 Texas Rangers for the longest such streak. They'll have a chance to set the new mark on Tuesday, when left-hander Clayton Richard attempts to quiet the Bombers' sizzling bats.
"That's kind of an obscure one, but now that it's happened with our group, it doesn't surprise me," manager Aaron Boone said. "We have a lot of guys capable of hitting the ball out of the ballpark. I think they help strengthen each other because collectively they're able to wear down pitchers. That eventually leads to more and more mistakes at different points in the night."
Hicks' fifth-inning drive off Aaron Sanchez gave the Yankees a lead that they would not relinquish. New York secured its ninth win in 10 games due in large part to a gritty effort from CC Sabathia, who settled in after allowing two runs in a 29-pitch first inning to log his 251st career victory.
"You just want to get the team back in the dugout as soon as possible, because these guys are capable of putting up runs," Sabathia said. "It really doesn't matter how many outs we have; one out, two outs, we can start a rally and score runs. You always have that in mind when you are out there. You just want to get them back in the dugout so they can score some runs."
Sabathia scattered six hits over six innings of two-run ball, throwing 104 pitches – his highest total since Sept. 29, 2016, against the Red Sox. As if he needed any more reminders of his advancing years, the lefty can now claim to have recorded strikeouts against both Vladimir Guerrero (7-for-37, 1 HR, 10 K) and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (2-for-3, 1 K).
"Both powerful hitters," Sabathia said. "I felt like Vlad Jr.'s got a little bit better eye, can cover the ball a little more. When I'm facing Cavan Biggio and Vlad Jr., it's time for me to go home."
DJ LeMahieu notched his first four-hit game as a Yankee, scoring a pair of runs and extending his hitting streak to 10 games. Stanton's impressive blast highlighted a seven-run frame that matched a May 19 outburst against the Rays as the Yanks' biggest inning of the season.
Gio Urshela and Brett Gardner drove in runs before Luke Voit greeted Derek Law with a two-run double that rattled down the left-field line. As Stanton watched the flight of his deep drive off Law, the slugger believed he had stamped the exclamation point on a convincing victory, building a 10-2 lead at the time.
Not so, as struggling reliever Jonathan Holder failed to retire any of the five men he faced in the eighth inning, tagged by Lourdes Gurriel Jr. for a homer and by Freddy Galvis for a grand slam that drew the Jays within three runs. Holder was sent down after the game.
Rowdy Tellez lifted a sacrifice fly off Aroldis Chapman in the ninth, but third baseman Urshela made a terrific play by throwing across his body to retire Galvis for the final out.
"Normally in a game like that, that's the final dagger," Stanton said of his homer. "But it took every run tonight."