3-run homer returns to Yankees’ repertoire

Why does it seem as though Carlos Beltran is always making history? The Yankees’ right fielder did it again with his game-winning home run in the eighth inning Monday night that unlocked a 2-2 score. Jacoby Ellsbury and Brett Gardner were on base after two-out singles when Beltran connected for his 14th homer of the season that turned back the Angels.

The three-run home run, which used to define the Yankees, has become a rarity this season. It was the first home run with more than two runners on board for the Yankees since Mark Teixeira’s three-run Jack April 7 against the Astros. MLB Network’s research showed that the 53-game drought between Yankees’ three-run homers or grand slams was the club’s longest in more than 40 years. They went 59 games without a three-run homer or grand slam in 1975 from June 20 through Aug. 19.

Just a year ago, the Yankees led the major leagues with a franchise-record 47 home runs of three or more runs (40 three-run homers, seven salamis), 18 more than the next-highest team (Blue Jays, 29) and the third-highest total in history (1996 Mariners, 53; 2000 Cardinals, 48). Only four of the Yankees’ 58 homers to date have been for three or fours runs.

Beltran’s blast batting right-handed off Angels lefthander Jose Alvarez was the Yanks’ second go-ahead homer in the eighth inning or later this season. The other was Gardner’s walk-off solo shot in the ninth April 23 against the Rays.

Beltran’s four go-ahead homers in the eighth inning or later in three years with the Yankees are the most on the club since 2011. Three of the four were three-run homers: also Aug. 14, 2015 at Toronto (eighth inning) and June 20, 2014 at Yankee Stadium against the Orioles (walk-off in ninth). Monday night’s home run was the Yankees’ latest go-ahead homer of at least three runs since Greg Bird’s three-run shot in the top of the 10th Sept. 22 last year at Toronto.

The Yankees are 10-1 this season when Ellsbury and Gardner both score runs in the same game and 32-5 since the start of 2015. Brian McCann and Starlin Castro, who tied the score in the seventh with two-out solo homers off Matt Shoemaker, hit the Yankees’ fourth set of back-to-back homers this season, tied for third-most in the AL (Orioles, 9; Tigers, 5) and equals their 2015 total of back-to-back dingers

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