NEW YORK (AP) — Giancarlo Stanton’s milestone homer resembled so many of the 399 that came before.
A line-drive rocket off his bat.
Stanton smashed his 400th home run, Gerrit Cole burnished his Cy Young Award credentials and the New York Yankees beat the Detroit Tigers 5-1 on Tuesday night.
DJ LeMahieu hit his second leadoff homer in four games and Gleyber Torres had a two-run double for the last-place Yankees (69-69), who have won four straight and seven of eight to get back to .500 for the first time since Aug. 15.
“I’m glad that we’re playing some good baseball,” Cole said.
Stanton’s two-run homer off reliever José Cisnero broke a 1-all tie in the sixth inning. The slugger reached 400 homers in 1,520 career games — fourth-fastest in major league history behind Mark McGwire (1,412), Babe Ruth (1,475) and Alex Rodriguez (1,489). Albert Pujols is fifth at 1,523.
“Big number. Just celebrated that moment with him, and coming in a big spot — tie game late,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “A very G-esque ball that no one really hits like that. An absolute missile.”
Stanton’s 451-foot laser to left-center was caught by a fan with a glove in the front row of the elevated bleachers above Detroit’s bullpen. Stanton said “the guy made a great catch on it” and he met him after the game, giving him and his family some bats and balls in return for the souvenir.
The large videoboard displayed the No. 400 milestone and Stanton — often the target of boos at Yankee Stadium since arriving in 2018 — came out of the dugout for a curtain call, doffing his helmet to the crowd of 31,553.
“That was great,” Stanton said. “It was awesome seeing all of my teammates and they’re excited and having fun with it, and to be able to go out for a curtain call was the cherry on top.”
The 2017 NL MVP with Miami, Stanton became the 58th big league player to reach 400 home runs and 10th to do it with the Yankees.
“I didn’t have a number in mind when I first started this game, but it’s pretty cool to be here now and keep it going,” Stanton said.
The drive made a winner of Cole (13-4), who struck out seven in six innings of one-run ball and took over the American League lead in ERA at 2.90. Three days before his 33rd birthday, the right-hander gave up eight hits but walked none, throwing 104 pitches on a steamy, 87-degree night.
“It was just so thick tonight,” Cole said. “The humidity was something else. I unfortunately started that sixth inning with a triple and just really had to go to work from there.”
The six-time All-Star is chasing his first Cy Young Award after finishing second twice and in the top five three other times. He beat Detroit for the second time in a week and improved to 9-1 in 13 career starts against the Tigers, who had won four in a row following a five-game slide.
Miguel Cabrera had an RBI single off Cole in the opener of his final series at Yankee Stadium. The 40-year-old Cabrera, given gifts by the Yankees in a pregame ceremony on the field, plans to retire after this season.
“It was awesome,” Detroit catcher Jake Rogers said. “It’s really cool to see what different teams get him.”
Javier Báez broke out of an 0-for-14 slump with three hits for the Tigers. But he struck out swinging with a runner on in the sixth as Cole threw a 98 mph fastball on his final pitch.
Tommy Kahnle, Jonathan Loáisiga and Clay Holmes combined for three innings of one-hit relief.
Joey Wentz (2-11) took the loss after issuing a leadoff walk to Aaron Judge in the sixth. Stanton connected with two outs, and Torres added his two-run double in the eighth.
“That’s what they do, they walk and hit homers. And they took advantage of it today,” Rogers said.
Detroit has dropped seven straight at Yankee Stadium since April 30, 2021.
“We’re not out of it until we’re out of it,” Stanton said.