NEW YORK -- David Phelps put his pitches in all the right places against a struggling team that was stuck in the wrong spot. Trevor Bauer Jersey . Phelps threw seven strong innings, Carlos Beltran drove in two runs and the New York Yankees beat Toronto 6-4 Thursday night for their 16th consecutive home win over the Blue Jays. "Everything was a little bit crisper today," Phelps said. "I was able to be aggressive the entire game." Jacoby Ellsbury stole two bases, scored twice and hit one of three early sacrifice flies for the Yankees off Drew Hutchison. New York swiped four bags in all and scratched out its fifth run when Brett Gardner was going as Derek Jeter hit an RBI groundout -- preventing an inning-ending double play. Phelps (3-4) yielded two runs and struck out seven in winning his second straight outing after a four-start skid. The Yankees earned their first three-game sweep at home this season and sliced Torontos lead in the AL East to 1 1/2 games. "Big series for us," reliever Adam Warren said after New York won for the seventh time in nine games. "Its nice to kind of see our team click a little bit and play some good baseball." Citing research by the Elias Sports Bureau, the Yankees said the winning streak against Toronto is their longest at home against one team since a 19-game run vs. Cleveland from June 1960 to April 1962. Melky Cabrera and Edwin Encarnacion each hit a two-run homer for the Blue Jays, who have lost nine of 12 and were swept for the first time since Sept. 10-12 last season by the Los Angeles Angels. Toronto has dropped 25 of 27 at Yankee Stadium dating to 2011 and hasnt won in the Bronx since Aug. 29, 2012. "Hey, if youre going to play in prime time, youve got to perform on the big stage and we didnt do it," manager John Gibbons said. "Were fully capable of doing it. We just didnt do it. Itll be definitely good to move on." With closer David Robertson receiving a rest, Warren got two outs for his second save -- ending a rhythm-less game that took 3 hours, 47 minutes. Gibbons was on the field five times in the first six innings for four discussions with the umpires, plus a pitching change. Phelps equaled his career high with 115 pitches and finished strong. He retired pinch-hitter Adam Lind with two on to end the sixth and then struck out two in a perfect seventh. "We really pushed him tonight," manager Joe Girardi said. "He did a great job." The right-hander was fired up, too, clenching his fist and yelling after freezing Jose Reyes for strike three with his final delivery. Phelps made a key defensive play to protect a one-run lead in the fifth. He got Reyes on a soft grounder with the infield in, pinning a runner at third, and then knocked down Cabreras two-out comebacker. Phelps whirled around and scrambled to find the ball near the front of the mound, then zipped a throw to first just in time. "I knew that it went down. I knew it wasnt going to be far away, I just had to get my eyes on it," Phelps said. "Straight scramble mode as soon as it hit me." Cabrera tripped awkwardly over the bag and tumbled hard to the turf, but appeared to be fine. Phelps also picked off Cabrera at second base with two runners on in the first inning and Encarnacion at the plate. Phelps and Girardi both called it the biggest play of the game. "The way our teams been playing right now, its exciting baseball," Phelps said. Encarnacion hit his 21st homer in the eighth, a long drive to left off Shawn Kelley that cut it to 6-4. Yankees hitters ran up Hutchisons pitch count early, just as they did against fellow youngster Marcus Stroman in the series opener. Kelly Johnson had a sacrifice fly in the second and Beltran added one in the third. Making his Yankee Stadium debut, Hutchison (5-5) threw 38 pitches in the second inning and needed 76 to get through three. He was pulled in the fifth trailing 3-2. "Youve got to make better pitches," Hutchison said. "When I got ahead I didnt make good pitches to put them away, and I fell behind quite a bit, too." Beltran hit an RBI double off Aaron Loup, and Brian Roberts stole two bases in the sixth before scoring on Jeters groundout. Steve Delabar walked three in the seventh, including Yangervis Solarte with the bases loaded to make it 6-2. NOTES: Toronto has seven more games scheduled at Yankee Stadium this year. The Blue Jays return on July 25. ... Lind had been sidelined since leaving Saturdays game in Baltimore with a bruised right foot. ... Lights-out Yankees reliever Dellin Betances was unavailable after pitching three scoreless innings in the first two games of the series, Girardi said. ... Johnson was shaken up and removed after the ball hit his left hand when he fouled off a bunt in the sixth. Solarte pinch-hit with a full count and struck out. X-rays on Johnson were negative and he is day to day with bruised fingers. Kevin Mitchell Jersey . -- Martin Kaymer never lost sight of opportunity even amid so much evidence of trouble in the closing stretch Sunday at The Players Championship. Cesar Cedeno Jersey .Pete Morelli said the back judge threw a flag on Cowboys linebacker Anthony Hitchens on a pass to Lions tight end Brandon Pettigrew in Dallas 24-20 wild-card win Sunday. But the head linesman said there wasnt enough contact and that Hitchens was face-guarding, which isnt a penalty in the NFL.MADRID, Spain -- Barcelona stumbled to a 3-2 home loss against Valencia on Saturday, giving Atletico Madrid a chance to move into sole possession of first place in the Spanish league. The Spanish champions decision not to sign a defender during the January transfer window may have backfired after Valencia took advantage of a lethargic, uninspired effort by its hosts at the Camp Nou, where former Spain coach Luis Aragones -- who previously coached the Catalan side -- was honoured after his death on Saturday. Barcelona led through Alexis Sanchezs eighth-minute goal but Dani Parejo equalized for Valencia before the break. Pablo Piatti headed Valencia ahead after the restart before Lionel Messis penalty -- and first league goal since September -- levelled the game again. But Barcelonas defence let Sofiane Feghouli burst free into the area to set up Paco Alcacers 59th-minute winner. Barcelona played with 10 men from the 78th after Jodi Alba was shown a second yellow card. The defeat means Atletico can lead the league alone for the first time this season if it does not lose at home to Real Sociedad on Sunday, when Real Madrid can also overtake its greatest rival with a victory at fourth-place Athletic Bilbao. Also on Saturday, Levante and Rayo Vallecano played to a scoreless draw, as did Getafe and Valladolid, while Malaga rallied to beat Sevilla 3-2 in an entertaining encounter. At the top of the standings, Atletico and Barcelona share 54 points, while Madrid has 53. Valencia provisionally moved into eighth. Barcelona coach Gerardo Martino was preoccupied by Barcelonas drop in play after just half an hour. "Im always worried after every one of our losses," Martino said. "Despite us having played well for a while against Valencia, Im very worried, much like the players are." Messi set up the opener after slashing a pass across the box beyond the far post where Alexis connected oddly to float it over goalkeeper Diego Alves. Valencia took control from the 44th when Parejo exploited a turnover inside the Barcelona half to lead a breakout with Feghouli, who returned a pass inside the area for Parejo to score easily. Dave Concepcion Jersey. "Their goal hurt us and, in the second half, the team failed to respond," said defender Javier Mascherano, who refused to blame the off-field distractions that have enveloped Barcelona. "Today it wasnt the distractions that beat us, but Valencia. The margin of error (to be champion) is zero." Valencia went ahead in the 48th when the 1.63-meter (5-foot-3) Piatti held off Dani Alves to jump high and head a looping ball over goalkeeper Victor Valdes. Valencia was unlucky as Pedro Rodriguezs shot came off Ricardo Costa to set up the spot kick, even though it appeared Costa had no chance of getting out of the way as the ball grazed his shoulder. Messi slotted home his ninth league goal in the 54th, and first since Sept. 28 against Almeria. Barcelonas defence was dormant five minutes later as Feghouli moved past three players to the goal line before cutting back to meet Alcacer, who blasted past Valdes for the winner. Messi had a golden opportunity to draw Barcelona even in the second minute of stoppage time, but he shot wide after precisely combining with Dani Alves and substitute Andres Iniesta to get free into the box. Valencia, which was Spains most active team in the January transfer, snapped a five-game winless run to deal Barcelona its first home league defeat in nearly two years. Malaga captain and winger Duda proved the hero at Rosaleda Stadium as he took advantage of Alberto Morenos silly clearance attempt to gather inside the area and lift the winning goal past goalkeeper Beto in the 82nd. Dudas penalty put the hosts ahead after half an hour before Sevilla scored a pair of unanswered goals through Carlos Baccas 10th of the season and Federico Fazios header in the 66th. Samuel Sanchez pegged home the equalizer in the 77th as Malaga rallied for an emotional victory during which coach Bernd Schuster was red-carded in stoppage time. Malaga moved four points clear of Valladolid and the last relegation spot. ' ' '
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