SEATTLE (AP) — Rookie Gary Sanchez kept up his torrid stretch with his seventh home run in the past nine games, and Masahiro Tanaka won his fourth straight start, leading the New York Yankees to a 5-0 win over the Seattle Mariners on Wednesday.
Tanaka (11-4) threw seven shutout innings and got the better of the Mariners and his former Japan League teammate Hisashi Iwakuma (14-9).
The Yankees won their third straight road series. They took two of three from the Mariners, one of the teams they’re chasing in the AL wild-card race.
Sanchez homered into the second deck in left field in the first inning on the first pitch from Iwakuma, his ninth home run in 18 games since joining the Yankees lineup on Aug. 3.
Sanchez added a double later in the game and his intentional walk in the seventh inning led to Mark Teixeira’s RBI single for a 4-0 lead. The Mariners took no chances with the new catcher the next time, either, again intentionally walking him.
Tanaka was shaky early, escaping jams in the second and third innings before rolling the rest of the way. He followed up 7 2/3 shutout innings in his last start against the Angels by keeping Seattle off the scoreboard, allowing six hits and striking out five.
Tanaka did issue his first walk since July 27 when he walked Seth Smith in the third inning, and snapped his streak of three consecutive starts with at least eight strikeouts and no walks.
After Ketel Marte bunted for a single with one out in the fifth, Tanaka retired his final eight batters.
Dellin Betances got the final out of the eighth and pitched the ninth for his sixth save.
Seattle’s best scoring chance came in the second inning when Leonys Martin missed a two-run homer by inches, settling for a line drive single off the top of the fence in right field and advanced Adam Lind to third base. Tanaka got two groundouts to end the threat.
Iwakuma lost his second straight start despite giving up just three earned runs. It was the second time he matched up with Tanaka and 13th time in major league history two Japanese pitchers met. Tanaka also got the victory in April when the two met at Yankee Stadium.
Yankees: C Brian McCann was given the day off after catching Tuesday’s game. It was the first game McCann caught since Aug. 12 and just the second since Aug. 4.
Mariners: 3B Kyle Seager was out of the lineup after fouling a ball off his right foot in Tuesday’s game. Initial X-rays were negative, but manager Scott Servais said Seager would get additional examination before the team left for its road trip.
Yankees: New York has an off day on Thursday before opening a series at home on Friday against Baltimore.
Mariners: Seattle opens a seven-game road trip on Thursday at the White Sox. James Paxton is expected to be activated off the disabled list to start the opener, although the move has not been announced.
Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.