NEW YORK -- Oakland rookie Jharel Cotton held the Yankees hitless until Matt Holliday launched a two-run homer with two outs in the sixth inning that sent resurgent CC Sabathia and New York to a 3-2 victory Saturday.
Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge was in the right spot for a pair of key catches to boost the AL East leaders, who won with just two hits.
Sabathia (5-2) has won three straight starts for the first time since April 2013. The 36-year-old lefty pitched into the seventh and struck out nine.
Dellin Betances escaped a second-and-third, one-out jam in the eighth, an inning that included the ejections of A's hitter Jed Lowrie and manager Bob Melvin for arguing strike three calls. Betances closed for his fifth save.
Cotton (3-5) was promoted from Triple-A Nashville before the game. He began the season in the Athletics' rotation but was sent down to the minors May 11 to refine his game.
Cotton's work on mixing his repertoire and throwing inside paid off. The 25-year-old righty hadn't come close to giving up a hit when he retired the first two batters in the sixth, yet he had thrown a lot of pitches.
After Gary Sanchez walked, Holliday homered. He connected on Cotton's 105th delivery, sending a drive to nearly the exact spot where Frankie Montas was warming up in the Oakland bullpen for a 3-1 lead.
Starlin Castro followed with a sharp single that finished Cotton, who struck out five and walked three in his 13th big league start. Cotton made his debut last September.
The last pitcher to throw a no-hitter against the Yankees all by himself was Hoyt Wilhelm in 1958 for Baltimore. In 2003, six Houston pitchers combined to no-hit the Yankees.
Ryon Healy hit an RBI double with two outs in the sixth that made it 1-all and took third on the throw home. Trevor Plouffe then lofted a fly to shallow right that Castro chased back from his second base spot - the ball popped out of his glove, right into Judge's mitt.
The 6-foot-7 Judge collided with beefy first baseman Chris Carter while swooping in to grab Chad Pinder's foul fly leading off the seventh. Judge's sunglasses went flying and Carter went down, but everyone was OK.
The Yankees scored in the first on a walk, a hit batter and Castro's sacrifice fly.
Josh Phegley homered off Sabathia in the seventh, pulling the A's to 3-2.
Athletics: 1B Yonder Alonso missed his third straight start because of a sore right wrist. Melvin said he hoped Alonso could play Sunday.
Yankees: Closer Aroldis Chapman (shoulder) made 25 throws from 60 feet, his first baseball activity in two weeks. He said he felt fine after the workout and that he will throw again Sunday. ... Slumping 3B Chase Headley will get a day or two off. "He's just frustrated and trying too hard," manager Joe Girardi said.
Athletics: RHP Andrew Triggs (5-3, 2.77) is 1-2 with a 3.97 ERA in four May starts after going 4-1 with a 1.84 ERA in five April starts.
Yankees: RHP Michael Pineda (5-2, 3.35) has given up no more than three earned runs in his last eight starts.
Former NFL running back Brandon Jacobs spent one season with the San Francisco 49ers in 2012 under head coach Jim Harbaugh.
Jacobs only played in two games and gained seven yards on five carries. The results were nothing like his 5,087 yards and 60 touchdowns over eight years with the Giants.
Apparently being pushed to the bench as a 31-year-old veteran running back didn't sit well with Jacobs.
“Going somewhere where they don’t have route conversions into certain coverages was just absurd,” Jacobs said Thursday on the Tiki and Tierney Show. “They’re just running routes in the defense, getting people killed. Size and strength is what they had, and that’s why they won.
"Let’s be real. They had great assistant coaches, but Jim didn’t know what he was doing. Jim had no idea. Jim is throwing slants into Cover-2 safeties, getting people hurt. That guy knew nothing, man."
On Saturday morning, Harbaugh responded to Jacobs with a tweet to him.
Biblical advice for @gatorboyrb Let all bitterness & wrath & anger & clamor & slander be put away from you, along with all malice.— Coach Harbaugh (@CoachJim4UM) May 27, 2017
Harbaugh went 44-19-1 in four seasons as the 49ers' head coach. He also added five playoff wins and a trip to the Super Bowl in the 2012-13 season, the one that Jacobs played for him.