Youngsters lead Yankees into finale vs. White Sox

CHICAGO -- A rash of injuries has forced the New York Yankees to keep dipping into their farm system to keep pace in the American League East.

Veteran outfielder Matt Holliday (viral infection) was the latest to hit the 10-day disabled list Wednesday for the Yankees, who go for a series win Thursday against the Chicago White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Holliday missed his fifth straight game Wednesday in the Yankees' 12-3 victory, and flew back to New York for further evaluation. It didn't matter because of New York's rookies, who hope to keep things rolling in the right direction in the series finale.

Leading the youngsters Wednesday was Miguel Andujar, who went 3-for-4 with four RBI after being recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre just a day after Tyler Wade.

"I always look at it as an opportunity for players to show us what they can do and to shine at this level," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "As far as being a manager, you look at the pieces you have every day, and I think the trickiest part for me is the order you put them in, because you don't have a lot of experience with them and you don't want to give them too much too early. But they have a chance to shine."

Girardi put three of his youngest players -- Andujar, Wade and Ronald Torreyes -- in the bottom three spots of the order Wednesday. All three responded with clutch hits.

Andujar laced a two-out, two-run single in his first major league plate appearance to highlight New York's three-run first inning. Wade and Torreyes each added RBI doubles and scored runs in a five-run sixth, which was punctuated by Aaron Judge's 27th home run of the season.

"You think about the at-bats they had, with Andujar getting us on the board early with his two RBI, and then the two-out RBI that we got (in the sixth)," Girardi said. "After (Chicago) made it 3-2, we got five runs with two outs, and they were big RBI from kids, so it was great to see."

New York will need more of that from its young players in order to keep pace with the Boston Red Sox in the division. The Yankees pulled back into a tie with Boston after the win Wednesday, but they now have six players on the disabled list.

That number might grow to seven as soon as Thursday after an MRI on infielder Tyler Austin's right hamstring. Austin sat out Wednesday after being relegated to designated hitter Tuesday.

"I can think of different things to do, but you have to make adjustments," Girardi said. "A lot of times division winners are determined by who survives the injuries the best, because it is such a long season. We have to survive this."

Right-hander Luis Cessa (0-2) will start the series finale for the Yankees.

Right-hander James Shields (2-1) will try to help Chicago earn a series split. Shields is looking to bounce back from a rough outing in his last start, when he allowed six runs in three innings against the Oakland A's. It was the veteran right-hander's first loss in six starts.

Shields is 11-16 with a 4.12 ERA in 32 career starts against the Yankees.

Following their loss Wednesday, the White Sox dropped to 2-8 in their past 10 games and remain in last place of the AL Central. They did get left-hander Carlos Rodon back into the rotation, even though he issued six walks in five innings.

"I think that as he continues to pitch here, it's going to continue to get better," Renteria said. "Obviously, toward the last year where he was starting to really kind of get a feel for everything, I think that will come back at some point. But we're just glad he was able to get through five and pitch."

The White Sox will likely be without right fielder Avisail Garcia, who left the game Wednesday in the top of the ninth inning with a sore left knee. Garcia will undergo an MRI on Thursday for the knee, which was injured sliding back to first base in the seventh inning. Garcia is leading Chicago with a .321 batting average and 51 RBI.
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