Yankees secure 31st winning season with 5-2 victory over Royals

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New York Yankees 5, Kansas City Royals 2

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Frankie Montas secured the victory in his first appearance of the season for the New York team from the bullpen. With a 5-2 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Saturday night, the Yankees sealed their 31st consecutive winning season with one game left to play.

In the decisive sixth inning, Gleyber Torres contributed by driving in two runs as part of a three-run surge.

Oswaldo Cabrera, Everson Pereira, and Estevan Florial all made significant contributions by delivering runs for the Yankees (82-79). With one game left to play, they guaranteed themselves a winning record, a remarkable turnaround after being six games below .500 just last month. This achievement marks the second-longest streak of its kind in major league history, trailing only their own remarkable 39-year stretch from 1926 to 1964.

Montas underwent labrum surgery in late February and dedicated the entire season to his recovery process. He recently completed two rehab appearances and traveled with the Yankees to Kansas City with the aspiration of making an appearance in at least one game before the season’s end.

Montas managed to retire four batters, conceding two hits and a walk during his time on the mound. He exited the game with one out and runners positioned on second and third in the sixth inning. However, Greg Weissert promptly rose to the occasion, striking out Nick Pratto and Maikel Garcia to extinguish the impending danger.

In the ninth inning, Clay Holmes took the mound and delivered a flawless performance, securing his 24th save in 27 opportunities.

Alec Marsh (3-9) took over for opener Steven Cruz and yielded three runs on six hits and three walks in a span of 4 1/3 innings for Kansas City. This loss dropped the team’s record to 55-106, equalling the 2005 squad for the most losses in a single season in the club’s history.

After an impressive performance the previous night, where they reached base with their first 10 batters and scored nine runs in a decisive 12-5 victory, the Royals continued their strong start on a humid final evening of September. Garcia initiated the game with a single and eventually crossed the plate on Nelson Velázquez’s single, while Salvador Perez contributed with a home run in the third inning, extending Kansas City’s lead to 3-0.

The Yankees managed to retrieve two runs against Marsh in the fourth inning before leveling the game in the sixth thanks to Florial’s single. Following that, Collin Snider issued walks to DJ LeMahieu and Aaron Judge, setting the stage for Torres, who delivered a clutch two-run single that propelled New York to a 5-2 lead.

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In the season finale, the Yankees will have right-handed pitcher Michael King (4-7, 2.50 ERA) taking the mound, while the Royals will rely on right-handed pitcher Zack Greinke (1-15, 5.18 ERA), who might be making his final start with Kansas City. Greinke, at 39 years old, is set to become a free agent after concluding his remarkable 20th season in the big leagues.

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