It didn’t take long for Luke Voit to make an impact.
The first baseman hit a game-winning single to score pinch-runner Tyler Wade from second base in the ninth inning of a wild, 6-5 win over the Royals in The Bronx on Wednesday night.
After the suddenly vulnerable Aroldis Chapman blew a save and let the Royals go up by a run in the top of the inning, Gary Sanchez got the closer off the hook with a one-out homer to left off Greg Holland to tie the game at 5-5.
Giancarlo Stanton singled to right and was replaced by Wade, who moved to second on a wild pitch with Voit at the plate.
Voit, in his second game back from a strained oblique, then crushed a pitch to the wall in left and Wade came around and scored easily, as the Yankees avoided a second straight loss to the Royals.
Chapman, who’s been dealing with a nail issue that Aaron Boone said was no longer a problem, struck out Hunter Dozier before Michael A. Taylor singled to bring up pinch-hitter Hanser Alberto in the top of the ninth. After whiffing Alberto, Chapman allowed a single to Whit Merrifield and then walked Carlos Santana intentionally to load the bases for Sebastian Rivero, who had replaced catcher Salvador Perez in the fourth inning.
Chapman walked Rivero on four pitches, none of them close, to force in a run and tie the game.
Ryan O’Hearn hit a dribbler to third that went for an infield hit to give the Royals the lead.
The Yankees had already come back in the bottom of the eighth, when they trailed by a run and Rougned Odor crushed a two-run homer to right-center for their first lead of the night.
It came after Zack Britton allowed a go-ahead homer in the top of the inning — and after Voit struck out with the bases loaded to end the seventh, when the score was still tied.
But the Yankees got another big hit from Odor, who has mostly been a non-factor at the plate, but can still provide occasional pop, which is why he remains on the roster.
Gleyber Torres led off the inning with a walk against left-hander Jake Brentz, but Miguel Andujar grounded into a double play to bring up Clint Frazier with two out.
Frazier drew a four-pitch walk.
With Gio Urshela unavailable after getting hit in the shin Tuesday, Odor faced the lefty Brentz and hit his eighth homer of the season.
Michael King got the start for the Yankees and saw his first-inning woes continue.
Perez had a two-out double and O’Hearn followed with a two-run shot to left to give the Royals a 2-0 lead in the opening frame.
King has allowed eight first-inning runs in his five starts this season.
The Yankees threatened in the bottom of the second, as Danny Duffy walked the bases loaded with two outs.
But Odor struck out to end the inning.
The left-handed Duffy, in his first start after missing over a month with a left forearm strain, was gone after throwing 42 pitches in two innings due to a pitch limit.
Kyle Zimmer came in and pitched a scoreless third before Carlos Hernandez entered in the fourth and walked a pair.
With two out, Frazier drilled a double to right-center to drive in both runners and tie the game at 2-2.
King loaded the bases with two outs in the fifth, walking two and hitting another before being replaced by Chad Green.
Green, who hadn’t entered a game before the sixth inning this season, came on and got O’Hearn to fly out.
He retired all seven batters he faced.
The Yankees had a chance to take the lead in the bottom of the seventh.
DJ LeMahieu worked a leadoff walk off Josh Staumont, forcing him from the game.
Scott Barlow came in and struck out the struggling Aaron Judge before Sanchez and Stanton walked to load the bases.
Voit whiffed to end the threat and keep the game tied.