Robertson ‘doesn’t blink’ in jam to lift Yankees over Jays

NEW YORK (AP) — David Robertson went wild and loaded the bases in the eighth inning, and the Yankees weren’t all that concerned.

“Whenever it’s a tough situation like that, I want D-Rob on the mound,” Aaron Judge said.

Or as manager Aaron Boone put it: “He doesn’t blink.”

Judge hit his fifth home run, Robertson pitched out of a self-inflicted jam and New York overcame some shaky defense on a chilly night to beat the Toronto Blue Jays 4-3 on Thursday.

Robertson loaded the bases with no outs on consecutive walks but limited Toronto to one run on pinch-hitter Curtis Granderson’s RBI single. Robertson struck out two and got a flyout from Luke Maile to hold a one-run lead.

“He’s the one guy that, even if it gets a little sideways for a minute, you always feel like he can bring it right back in,” Boone said.

Not that Robertson wasn’t feeling some stress.

“I had to do something,” he said. “I was going to blow the game.”

Toronto was eyeing a big inning for a second straight game. Granderson hit his ninth career grand slam in a 15-5 win over Kansas City on Wednesday.

“That guy Robertson? He’s not going to melt,” Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said.

Judge lofted a solo shot to make it 4-2 in the seventh. He turned on a 3-2 splitter from Tyler Clippard, spoiling the reliever’s first outing at Yankee Stadium since New York traded him to the White Sox last July.

CC Sabathia allowed two unearned runs over 4 1/3 innings and 71 pitches in his first start since straining his right hip on April 6. He is 9-0 with a 1.88 ERA in his last 13 regular-season starts following a Yankees loss.

“He gave us what we needed,” Boone said.

Chad Green (1-0) retired five straight batters, Dellin Betances pitched a perfect seventh and Robertson delivered a lead to Aroldis Chapman, who struck out the side on 12 pitches for his third save, twice topping 100 mph.

Aaron Sanchez (1-2) held New York to three runs over six innings. He allowed seven hits, one start after no-hitting Baltimore into the eighth inning.

“They dunked a couple of balls in early and scored,” Gibbons said. “But for a tough lineup to face, I thought he was pretty good.”

Moved from cleanup to the three-spot and flipping slots with struggling slugger Giancarlo Stanton, Didi Gregorius put New York ahead 3-2 with an RBI single in the fifth. Gregorius entered leading the majors in OPS (1.268) and tied for second in the AL with 16 RBIs.

Stanton followed with an infield single to snap an 0-for-15 skid. He was 1 for 3 with a walk and is 4 for 38 with 20 strikeouts at Yankee Stadium this season.

Neil Walker sparked New York’s two-run second inning by snapping an 0-for-16 skid with a double off the right-field wall. He scored on a single by Ronald Torreyes.

Braves 12, Mets 4

ATLANTA — Preston Tucker drove in a career-high five runs, and Matt Wisler (1-0) allowed one run two hits in seven innings after being called up from the minors.

Kurt Suzuki had three hits and drove in three runs, including a two-run homer in the first off Matt Harvey (0-2), who allowed six runs and eight hits in six innings.

Red Sox 8, Angels 2

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Mookie Betts hit his second leadoff homer in three games, Andrew Benintendi homered and drove in three runs and Boston completed a dominant sweep of AL West-leading Los Angeles.

J.D. Martinez and Rafael Devers also drove in runs during the seventh consecutive victory by the major league-leading Red Sox, who have won 16 of 17 since losing on opening day.

Eduardo Rodriguez (2-0) pitched six innings of three-hit ball as Boston extended the best start in the 118-year-old franchise’s history.

Boston’s 11 homers off the Angels are the franchise’s most in a three-game series since 1977. The Red Sox pounded out 43 hits and 27 runs in 27 innings at the Big A, continuing their torrid start to manager Alex Cora’s debut season.

Chris Young homered for the Angels, who started the season 13-3 before running into the Boston buzzsaw.

Shohei Ohtani went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts as the Angels’ designated hitter in his first action since taking his first career loss on the mound Tuesday. Although he’s still batting .324, the two-way rookie struggled while moving up to sixth in manager Mike Scioscia’s lineup.

Betts opened the series with a homer off Ohtani on Tuesday night, going on to a three-homer game. He added another homer off Nick Tropeano (1-1) in the series finale, giving him six this season.

Astros 9, Mariners 2

SEATTLE — Charlie Morton pitched seven innings of three-hit ball, Jose Altuve hit a three-run double and the Houston Astros beat the Seattle Mariners 9-2 on Thursday after Evan Gattis hit into a 5-4-3 triple play in the fourth inning.

Morton (3-0) retired 15 straight at one stretch and didn’t allow a runner to reach second base.

Marco Gonzales (1-2) allowed three runs — all unearned because of a throwing error by third baseman Kyle Seager — and four hits in 4 2/3 innings.

Cubs 8, Cardinals 5

CHICAGO — Jon Lester (2-0) was dominant through six innings of two-hit ball in his 100th start as Cub, and Jason Heyward hit a two-run homer.

Kris Bryant and Kyle Schwarber each had two RBIs as Chicago took a 6-1 lead after two innings. Every Cubs starter had a hit, including three by Anthony Rizzo and two each by Heyward, Schwarber and Javier Baez.

Brandon Morrow pitched a perfect ninth to complete a five-hitter and remain perfect in three save chances.

Ten of Chicago’s first 16 batters reached against Luke Weaver (2-1), who allowed six runs and nine hits in four innings.

Tigers 13, Orioles 8

DETROIT — Leonys Martin hit his first big league grand slam, and Jeimer Candelario had four hits and three RBIs as Detroit completed a three-game sweep and extended Baltimore’s losing streak to six.

Jordan Zimmermann (1-0) gave up four runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings, allowing two home runs to Manny Machado and one to Chris Davis.

Alex Cobb (0-2) made his second start after signing late in spring training and his ERA rose to 15.43. He allowed seven runs — five earned — and 10 hits in 3 1/3 innings.

Phillies 7, Pirates 0

PHILADELPHIA — Jake Arrieta (2-0) struck out 10 and tossed one-hit ball over seven innings. Yacksel Rios allowed a hit in the eighth and Victor Arano finished the two-hitter with a perfect ninth.

Rhys Hoskins homered and Cesar Hernandez had a three-run single.

Jameson Taillon (2-1) allowed five runs and four hits in 1 1/3 innings.

Brewers 12, Marlins 3

MILWAUKEE — Lorenzo Cain homered, doubled twice and scored four times, and pinch-hitter Ryan Braun launched a three-run homer that gave him 1,000 RBIs. The Brewers erased a 3-2 deficit with three runs in the fifth inning and added seven in the sixth.

Slumping Lewis Brinson, acquired from Milwaukee in the offseason trade for Christian Yelich, celebrated his return to Miller Park with his first two homers of the season for Miami.

Chase Anderson (2-1) allowed three runs and five hits in 5 1/3 innings for the win. Dillon Peters (2-2) gave up four runs, three hits, five walks and a pair of wilc pitches in 4 2/3 innings.

Diamondbacks 3, Giants 1

PHOENIX — Zack Greinke (2-1) allowed one run and three hits in seven innings, giving up a solo homer to Brandon Belt, and Arizona won its sixth straight series.

Brad Boxberger got Belt to pop out with two on in the ninth inning for his fifth straight save to open the season, a night after allowing the go-ahead homer to Belt in the 10th.

A.J. Pollock hit a solo homer off Ty Blach (1-3) and Ketel Marte also had a solo shot to help the Diamondbacks take two of three from the Giants. Arizona had never opened a season with more than two straight series wins.

By Paul Wager

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