NEW YORK — Bouncing into a double play in the bottom of the second inning on Saturday afternoon, Gio Urshela was slow to leave the batter's box, holding his hand close to his right eye.
Replays showed shards of Urshela's lumber splintering on contact, flying toward his face.
Looking back after the game, Yankees manager Aaron Boone recalled the "scary moment," telling members of New York's bench to get loose in case Urshela was unable to keep playing.
After some eye drops and a quick check from the training staff, Urshela would stay in the game. Six frames later, the third baseman helped shatter the Athletics' hopes of a victory at Yankee Stadium with a go-ahead solo home run in the bottom of the eighth.
The blast off Oakland's left-hander Jesús Luzardo started a three-run frame, breaking the game open. Aroldis Chapman was summoned to record the final three outs, and although one run came across, the closer was able to shut the door emphatically. Chapman fired in a 103.4-mph fastball to strike out Matt Chapman, sealing a 7-5 win.
Urshela's long ball wasn't his only run-scoring base knock of the afternoon. The third baseman also contributed an RBI single with two outs in the fourth, putting New York on the board.
After the game, Urshela assured that his eye is feeling fine and the wood that hit his eye fell out during the play. All it took was a visit with the trainers and some water to make sure everything was clean.
Starting pitcher Domingo Germán dug the Yankees into a bit of a hole early on, allowing two home runs and four earned runs over four frames of work. A homer from Gary Sánchez and a pair of RBI singles from Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton brought those in pinstripes back into the game.
With the ballgame tied at four runs apiece, Urshela's big fly—soaring 424 feet to center field—sent a crowd of 23,985 fans in attendance into a frenzy. A two-RBI single from DJ LeMahieu later in the inning turned out to be the difference.
New York has now won four of their last five games. Each win has featured a comeback in the seventh inning or later. Left-hander Jordan Montgomery gets the baseball in Sunday afternoon's rubber match as the Yankees look to win the series.
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