After watching the Yankees awake from a deep lumber slumber in the previous two games CC Sabathia didn’t have the luxury of his teammates ringing the scoreboard often last night.

What the staff ace had was a fierce desire to compete without his best stuff, Robinson Cano’s smoking bat and Twins manager Ron Gardenhire’s decision to pitch to baseball’s hottest hitter with runners on second and third, no outs and the hosts leading by two runs in the sixth inning.

“Robbie is one of the best hitters in the game,’’ Sabathia said after he earned his 200th victory to help the Yankees eke out a 3-2 win in front of 38,457 at Target Field. “He got on a streak like this last year at the end and carried us. It’s fun to watch.’’

Cano delivered a two-run double off right-hander P.J. Walters that tied the score, and Lyle Overbay followed with a sacrifice fly that inched the Yankees ahead, 3-2.

Sabathia survived mini-jams in the sixth and seventh and turned the lead over to David Robertson in the eighth.

“It was important to have a shut-down game and pitch with a lead,’’ said Sabathia. “That’s something I haven’t been doing lately.’’

Sabathia let an early 3-0 advantage evaporate last Friday night in Baltimore and snapped in the dugout. This time he gave up a run in the third when he had to pitch around new shortstop Luis Cruz’s throwing error and another in the fifth when Trevor Plouffe skipped a homer off the top of the center-field fence.

“I was just trying to grind and make pitches,’’ said Sabathia, who required a season-high 121 to get through seven innings in which he gave up two runs, seven hits, walked three and fanned nine with high school coach Abe Hobbs on hand. “I felt my arm angle was all over the place. I was battling all night and I was happy to get the win.’’