Yankees' power sources vs. Dodgers enjoyed rare night together

Sporting News

Let's get the obligatory Hollywood reference out of the way: The Yankees' stars came out to play in LA on Friday night.

Now, on to the baseball: The fact all those stars were in the lineup rather than nursing injuries was a rare treat for Bombers fans.

They all did something big, too:

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Aaron Judge: A long home run against Dodgers All-Star left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu.

Gary Sanchez: Career home run No. 100; fastest in American League history, and fastest catcher ever, to reach that mark.

Gleyber Torres: A tack-on home run off reliever Yimi Garcia.

Didi Gregorius: Two home runs, including a game-breaking grand slam off Ryu in the fifth after the Dodgers walked Sanchez intentionally to load the bases.

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All of that . . . um . . . star power, which supported James Paxton's stellar pitching, fueled a 10-2 victory in Game 1 of a weekend series between World Series favorites.

"To come play a big interleague series at Dodger Stadium, I think our guys relished that," Yankees manager Aaron Boone told reporters, per The Associated Press. "To have those impact at-bats with slug against a guy like Ryu, up and down the lineup, it was really nice to see."

How seldom have the Yankees had all, or even most, of their big bats together? Friday was just the 21st time this season that Sanchez, Judge, Torres and Gregorius have been in the starting lineup together. Gregorius was playing in his 57th game (out of 130). Judge was playing in No. 73. Sanchez was in his 89th. Torres was playing No. 118; he is the only one of the four not to be on the injured list this year.

Giancarlo Stanton, Edwin Encarnacion, Aaron Hicks and Luke Voit are all on the IL now. Miguel Andujar was lost for the season in May.

New York's lineup Friday included some of the guys who have helped to hold things together: DJ LeMahieu, Gio Urshela, Cameron Maybin and Brett Gardner. The foursome combined to go 7 for 20 vs. LA. That's a strong . . . ahem . . . supporting cast.

"Those guys are still banged up, too, but even the guys that they throw out there, there's athleticism," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts told reporters, per MLB.com, when asked about the similarities between the Yankees and his team. "They don't move guys around as much as we do, but up and down the lineup they can hurt you in a lot of different ways."

It appears likely the Yankees' "A" lineup won't be available until late in the season, either. Encarnacion is out until at least mid-September. Stanton is progressing slowly. Hicks and Voit could be back in a week or two.

Clearly, having all the "regulars" around hasn't been a requirement for this team to succeed. As has been documented ad infinitum, the Yankees have powered through the pain to lead the American League in runs and slug the second-most homers behind the Twins.

Still, it couldn't hurt to have everyone ready if the Bombers return to Chavez Ravine in a couple of months to play on baseball's biggest stage.

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