NEW YORK (AP) — Austin Bibens-Dirkx pitched seven dazzling innings in his first shot at the New York Yankees after 12 seasons in the minors, and Carlos Gomez homered for the Texas Rangers in their 8-1 victory Saturday.
Robinson Chirinos also went deep and Elvis Andrus had a pair of run-scoring hits for the Rangers, who rebounded quickly from a difficult defeat that ended at 12:19 a.m. The teams were back on the field less than 13 hours after New York rallied to win the rain-delayed series opener 2-1 in 10 innings, and Bibens-Dirkx (3-0) lulled the Yankees’ bats to sleep.
The 32-year-old rookie, promoted to the majors last month for the first time, allowed only Aaron Judge’s major league-leading 26th home run in his fourth big league start. Filling a spot in Texas’ injury-depleted rotation lately, the right-hander scattered five hits and walked one while striking out three on 93 efficient pitches.
Not a bad Yankee Stadium debut for a guy who was pitching in the independent Atlantic League last year and bounced all around the minors before finally getting his chance.
Fittingly, his unusual name is misspelled in the player development section of Texas’ media guide, missing the “x″ in Bibens-Dirkx.
New York, which began the day leading the AL East by a percentage point over Boston, has dropped nine of 11. Texas has won 10 of 15.
Luis Cessa (0-2) flashed sharp stuff in his 11th major league start and second this season. Pitching in place of injured CC Sabathia, the right-hander struck out eight in five innings. He was charged with three runs and three hits.
Gomez hit a two-run shot off Cessa in the fourth and Texas broke it open with four in the ninth against struggling reliever Tyler Clippard, including a two-run double by Shin-Soo Choo.
Gomez also scored on a wild pitch from Clippard, booed heartily by the crowd of 40,225.
Rangers: Young slugger Joey Gallo was out of the lineup to rest a sore hamstring. … LHP Martin Perez was placed on the 10-day disabled list, retroactive to Friday, after injuring the thumb on his non-pitching hand in an accident at the team hotel Thursday night. INF-OF Drew Robinson was recalled from Triple-A Round Rock. Perez ripped off the finger nail and broke a bone at the tip of his right thumb when he caught it in the hinge of a door, the team said. He joins fellow starters Cole Hamels, Andrew Cashner and A.J. Griffin on the DL. … Hamels (right oblique strain) came out of Friday’s bullpen session fine and is set to start Monday night in Cleveland. Cashner (left oblique strain) threw a 41-pitch bullpen and said he felt good. He will be re-evaluated Sunday and is a candidate to start Thursday at Cleveland. … Ex-Yankee Pete Kozma played shortstop instead of Andrus, who was the DH.
Yankees: LF Brett Gardner and C Gary Sanchez were rested after the long night Friday. … 3B Chase Headley missed his third consecutive game due to back spasms. … RHP Adam Warren (shoulder inflammation) was scheduled to play catch.
Rangers: Coming off a terrific performance in a win over Toronto, RHP Nick Martinez (2-3, 4.33 ERA) starts the series finale Sunday. Martinez played his college ball in the Bronx at nearby Fordham, where he was primarily a second baseman. He has made three previous starts at Yankee Stadium, going 1-0 with a 2.08 ERA.
Yankees: The 71st annual Old Timers’ Day at Yankee Stadium is scheduled to feature Hall of Famers Whitey Ford, Goose Gossage, Rickey Henderson, Reggie Jackson, Joe Torre and 2017 inductee Tim Raines, who will be recognized during a special ceremony. In addition, longtime catcher Jorge Posada plans to make his Old Timers’ Day debut. Once the former players are done, RHP Michael Pineda (7-3, 3.56) takes the mound for New York. Pineda is 6-1 with a 1.92 ERA in eight home starts this season but 0-3 with a 4.35 ERA in five career games against Texas.