NEW YORK — Matt Carpenter hit a homer twice and tied his career high with seven RBI. He propelled the New York Yankees to wrap up a weekend win over the Chicago Cubs with an 18-4 win for their 11th win in 12 games on Sunday.
The 36-year-old was signed on May 26 after spending the first seven weeks at Triple-A Round Rock in Texas. A three-time All-Star with St. Louis coming off three straight seasons of decline, Carpenter became the second player since 1900 to hit six home runs in his first 10 games for a team after Colorado’s Trevor Story in 2016.
Carpenter pulled a bases-laden walk as New York chased Keegan Thompson in a first five-run and hit a three-run homer in the second ahead of Daniel Norris at 8-1. He added a two-run drive against Alec Mills in the sixth for his first multihomer game in four years and an RBI double against Sean Newcomb in the seventh.
Carpenter hits .333 with 13 RBI and is quickly becoming a clubhouse and fan favorite known for his gritty look with thick black eyes. Carpenter shaved his longtime beard to comply with Yankees facial hair rules but retained a mustache — and joined pitcher Nestor Cortes. Her style inspired Marwin Gonzalez and Lucas Luetge to try mustaches.
He adjusted his seven RBI in July 2018 against the Cubs when he had his only three-homer game. He cleaned at third base with two assists in his first big league game on the field of the year.
Kyle Higashioka added his first two home runs of the season after hitting seven in spring practice. He was treated in silence as he returned to the dugout after his third inning drive from Norris and then homed in the eighth from Frank Schwindel, usually a first baseman.
Carpenter and Higashioka were added late to the lineup due to second baseman Gleyber Torres feeling nauseous and catcher Jose Trevino suffering from back pain.
Giancarlo Stanton and Isiah Kiner-Falefa each had three RBIs as the Yankees hit their most runs since beating Toronto 20-6 on Sept. 15, 2020. New York had a season high with 17 goals.
Chicago’s six-game losing streak is the longest this year and saw the Cubs fall 23-36 in their worst 13 games of the season under .500.
New York took a 10-1 lead in the third round, hitting twice and winning their seventh series of the season. The Yankees surpassed Chicago in the three-game streak 28-5 and improved to 15-4 against the Cubs, 23-4 including the 1932 and ’38 World Series sweeps. The Cubs were wiped out 0-12 in the Bronx.
New York is 44-16 best in the major leagues and has won 11 straight home games, one fewer than the most since the new Yankee Stadium opened in 2009. The Yankees have conceded a major league low of 180 runs, their fewest in 60 games
Jameson Taillon (7-1) has gone unbeaten in his last 11 starts, giving up three carries and seven hits in five innings. He escaped a base-loaded jam by putting Vertigo on a flyout that ended the fifth.
Manny Banuelos threw three innings for his first big league save.
Thompson (6-2) left the mound feeling as blue as his unusually colored glove. He allowed five runs — three earned — three hits and three walks while notching two outs and throwing 19 of 37 pitches for strikes. His ERA has gone from 1.99 to 3.67 in his last two starts.
Thompson and Norris walked six in the first two innings, and all six scored.
Ian Happ, twice as shy, put the Cubs in the second deck of right field with a home run from the first inning.
Carpenter drove in the tie run when he took a low fastball for Thompson’s third straight walk, and Kiner-Falefa followed with an opposing double-barreled double down the right field line.
Third baseman Patrick Wisdom dropped Gonzalez’s pop out of his glove for a pre-plate error, and Joey Gallo chased Thompson with a two-run double that made it 5-1.
Cubs RHP Michael Rucker was activated from the 15-day IL for Triple-A Iowa and Newcomb, who has been out since May 7, after recovering from a left ankle sprain he sustained while banging outfield .
Boys: OF Seiya Suzuki, who has been sidelined since May 26 with a sprained left ring finger, still has swelling and will not participate in baseball activity for at least five days.
Yankees: Trevino’s back started bothering him on Saturday. … After Torres was out, DJ LeMahieu moved up from third to second, and Carpenter played third, his first time at first base for Triple-A Round Rock since May 17. His only third this year had been against Reno for the last five innings on May 8th. .. RHP Esteban Loaisiga, out since May 22 with a right shoulder injury, will begin a throwing program on Monday…LHP Aroldis Chapman (left Achilles tendinitis) will throw on flat ground on Tuesday.
Cubs: LHP Justin Steele (1-5, 4.79) will be on the mound in Monday’s homestand opener against San Diego and Yu Darvish (5-3, 3.61).
Yankees: RHP Gerrit Cole (5-1, 3.63) starts Tuesday’s opener against Tampa Bay after hitting five career-high home runs in Minnesota last week. Former Yankee Corey Kluber (3-2, 3.88) starts for the Rays.