SEATTLE — Derek Jeter had a memorable final regular season appearance in Seattle with three hits, two runs scored and two RBIs, and the New York Yankees completed their first three-game sweep of the season with a 6-3 win over the Mariners on Thursday night.
Jeter was honored by the Mariners before the start of the series, then helped jump start the Yankees. Jeter had a singles in his first two at-bats off Seattle starter Roenis Elias (5-5), then greeted reliever Dominic Leone with a two-run single in the fourth that gave the Yankees a 6-1 lead.
Jeter finished the series with seven hits.
Jacoby Ellsbury hit a two-run homer in the first inning to extend his hitting streak to 16 games and gave starter Chase Whitley (2-0) an early lead.
Whitley threw a career-high 7 2-3 innings getting his second straight win. He also got a huge defensive play from Ellsbury in the fifth, robbing former Yankees star Robinson Cano of at least a RBI double with a leaping catch at the wall in center field.
David Robertson got the final two outs for New York for his 16th save.
But this night, and much of the series, was about Jeter’s farewell tour. His professional start came in Seattle in May 1995 so returning to the Pacific Northwest held extra meaning than some of the other farewells Jeter will make this season. He was given thundering ovations every time he stepped to the plate.
Jeter’s received a standing ovation from the entire stadium on his final at-bat in the ninth. He grounded out on a comebacker to the mound and tipped his helmet as jogged of the field.
Seattle was swept for the first time since April 18-20 when it dropped three straight in Miami, part of the Mariners early eight-game losing streak.
Whitley allowed just five hits and his only mistake was a pitch left up in the strike zone to Logan Morrison, who hit a line drive homer in the second inning. Whitley struck out six and has not walked a batter in his past four starts.
Both times Seattle was on the verge of a rally it could not get a two-out hit. The Mariners had runners at the corners in the third but Kyle Seager struck out looking on an inside fastball. In the fifth, James Jones chopped two-out single to score Brad Miller. Cano then drove the first pitch from Whitley to deep left-center, only to watch Ellsbury jump and haul in the drive crashing into the wall.
Two innings later, after Ellsbury left with tightness in his right hip, Brett Gardner added another defensive gem, hauling in Mike Zunino’s drive at the top of the fence in left-center to take away extra bases.
Elias had the shortest outing of his career going 3 1-3 innings. Dominic Leone took over and was able to jam Jeter on an inside fastball. But Jeter got just enough to drive it over the infield and into right for a two-run single and a 6-1 New York lead.
Grammy award winning hip-hop artist Macklemore threw out the first pitch on the night he was honored by the Mariners with a bobblehead. … Yankees are 17-10 in their last 27 road games. … Whitley has gone 114 consecutive batters without issuing a walk.