CLEVELAND (AP) Juan Soto hit a three-run homer and Cody Poteet pitched six solid innings in his debut for New York as the Yankees won 8-2 to sweep a doubleheader on Saturday over the Cleveland Guardians and continue one of the strongest starts in their storied history.

New York took the opener 3-2.

The Yankees are 12-3 for the seventh time and first since 2003, when they made one of their 40 trips to the World Series. They're 8-1 on the road, and have won their first five series for just the third time (1923 and 2010).

New York's lineup is potent from top to bottom.

“It’s been impressive," Aaron Judge said of the Yankees' early offense. “We do a great job of wearing down the starting pitching, and when you do that, it kind of forces the hand of teams to go to their bullpen and bring in certain guys they don’t want to in situations.”

Soto, acquired by the club in an offseason trade from San Diego to put New York back on top, connected in the fourth off Triston McKenzie (1-2), who struggled from the outset and walked six in four innings.

Poteet (1-0) allowed one run and six hits while picking up his first win since 2021 - 1,056 days ago - with Miami. The 29-year-old did not pitch in the majors last season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2022.

After being recalled from the minors as the 27th man for the doubleheader, Poteet admitted having some pregame nerves.

He didn't show them.

“Super meaningful, priceless and amazing,” he said afterward. "Something I would have dreamt as a kid playing Whiffle ball in the backyard. Just being back there on a major league field is such a privilege and not a guarantee, so very thankful to be able to be out there tonight.”

Poteet signed a contract in January with New York to add pitching depth after the Yankees traded some of it away in the deal for Soto.

“We all felt like when we got him over the offseason that he was going to be a guy who can play a role for us,” said Yankees manager Aaron Boone. "And he sure looked the part tonight.”

One of the few bright spots for Cleveland was Estevan Florial, who homered in the fifth inning of Game 2. Florial was once rated New York's top prospect before the club traded him to the Guardians in December.

Josh Naylor also homered for the Guardians, who are 1-9 in their last five doubleheaders.

Already down 3-0 following Anthony Volpe's RBI single, McKenzie grooved a 3-0 fastball that Soto pounded over the wall in center for his third homer with New York.

Only 25, Soto has now homered in all 30 current MLB stadiums.

“He's a great, great player," Boone said, noting the impressive homer stat. “It's not surprising.”

In the opener, the Yankees got a two-run homer from Oswaldo Cabrera and survived a shaky ninth inning by closer Clay Holmes to improve to 5-0 in one-run games.

New York starter Clarke Schmidt (1-0) allowed one run over five-plus innings before Boone turned to his solid bullpen.

Caleb Ferguson pitched one inning, Ian Hamilton went two and Boone brought in Holmes, who gave up a double to Ramon Laureano - a shot into a stiff wind off Lake Erie.

"April in Cleveland helped us out there a little bit,” Boone said, smiling.

Holmes shook off the hit by striking out two and getting a groundout for his sixth save.

“That was a good win to hang onto,” Holmes said.

Cleveland starter Carlos Carrasco (0-1) held the Yankees to one run in 4 2/3 innings in Game 1.

It was Carrasco's first start in Cleveland since 2020, when he faced New York in Game 2 of the AL Wild Card Series. Two months later, he was traded to the Mets as part of the blockbuster Francisco Lindor deal.


Yankees: 3B DJ LeMahieu (broken foot) is “doing really well,” according to Boone and “getting close” to rejoining the club. LeMahieu will have to play in some minor league games before being activated. ... INF Jon Berti (groin) was placed on the 10-day IL between games. He got hurt trying to beat out an infield single earlier in the week.

Guardians: RHP Gavin Williams (elbow soreness) will pitch a two-inning simulated game on Monday in Arizona. Williams got hurt while throwing a weighted ball in spring training before a start on March 9. The team initially thought he would only miss a week.


Yankees LHP Nestor Cortes (1-1, 3.50 ERA) starts the series finale against LHP Logan Allen (2-0, 4.60). Cortes pitched eight scoreless innings in his previous outing against Miami.



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