Yankee offense having a blast
Rodriguez's 9th HR highlights latest rout
The New York Yankees have found the formula to beat Cleveland: Get a big early lead and a home run from Alex Rodriguez to help a rookie starter gain his first major league win.
Rodriguez hit his major league-leading ninth homer, Kei Igawa limited the Indians to a pair of runs over six innings, and the Yankees defeated Cleveland, 9-2, last night in New York.
Jason Giambi also homered for the Yankees.
Rodriguez hit a two-run drive in the sixth off reliever Tom Mastny, connecting for the second straight night. Rodriguez, who leads the majors with 23 RBIs, matched Albert Pujols and Chris Shelton (both last year) as the fourth-fastest to nine homers, trailing only Mike Schmidt (10 games in 1976), Luis Gonzalez (10 in 2001), and Larry Walker (12 in 1997).
Rodriguez had been 0 for 3 with two strikeouts before the drive to left, which extended his regular-season hitting streak to 18 games dating to last year. He has an extra-base hit in 12 of 13 games this season and is batting .365.
New York has outscored the Indians, 19-5, and outhit them, 24-10, in the opening two games of the three-game series.
A night after Chase Wright won his big league debut with plenty of run support, Igawa (1-0) was handed a 6-2 lead in the third. The lefthander allowed five hits, struck out five, and walked one, lowering his ERA from 7.84 to 6.06.
After Bobby Abreu's first-inning sacrifice fly against Jeremy Sowers (0-1), Igawa fell behind in the third when Jason Michaels and Travis Hafner hit consecutive RBI singles. New York then chased Sowers in a five-run third.
Twins 5, Mariners 4 -- With Seattle ace Felix Hernandez removed in the first because of tightness in his pitching elbow, visiting Minnesota jumped ahead early and held on when Luis Castillo threw out Adrian Beltre at the plate to end the game.
Hernandez (2-1), whose last start was a one-hitter in Boston, recorded just one out and was charged with three runs. The Mariners said the 21-year-old righthander left "for precautionary reasons" and would be re-evaluated today.
Carlos Silva (2-0) shut out the Mariners until Richie Sexson hit a three-run homer in the sixth. Silva struck out four, walked one, and allowed eight hits in 6 1/3 innings.
Athletics 3, Angels 0 -- Dan Haren (1-2) outpitched John Lackey (2-2) for his first win of the season and Eric Chavez drove in two runs to help host Oakland deal Los Angeles its sixth straight loss.
Royals 4, Tigers 3 -- After tying it with two runs in the top of the ninth off Detroit closer Todd Jones, John Buck hit a leadoff homer in the 10th off Fernando Rodney (1-3) to cap Kansas City's comeback.
Orioles 6, Devil Rays 4 -- Erik Bedard (3-1) won his third straight start, Kevin Millar hit a tiebreaking double, and Baltimore beat host Tampa Bay.
Mets 9, Marlins 2 -- John Maine took a no-hitter into the seventh and New York scored four times before Dontrelle Willis retired a batter in a romp in Miami.
Miguel Cabrera's sharp single broke up Maine's bid for the Mets' first-ever no-hitter. Three batters later, Joe Borchard hit a two-run homer. Maine (2-0) struck out seven and walked four in seven innings.
Willis (3-1) allowed 10 hits and eight runs, seven earned, in five innings. Carlos Beltran touched him for a two-run homer.
Giants 6, Cardinals 5 -- After Barry Bonds hit his 738th career homer, a solo shot in the eighth, to tie the game, Rich Aurilia won it for host San Francisco with a two-out RBI single in the 12th.
Diamondbacks 5, Padres 2 -- At San Diego, Eric Byrnes singled in the go-ahead run with two outs in the 12th for Arizona, which got a career-high 13 strikeouts from Brandon Webb, including six in a row.
Rockies 7, Dodgers 2 -- At Denver, Yorvit Torrealba hit a two-run single to put Colorado ahead early, and the Rockies took advantage of an ineffective Derek Lowe (2-2).
Braves 8, Cubs 6 -- Jeff Francoeur hit a three-run homer and Kelly Johnson added a two-run single in the seventh as Atlanta came from behind to beat visiting Chicago.
Nationals 5, Phillies 4 -- Felipe Lopez's sacrifice fly off Francisco Rosario (0-1) in the 13th picked up host Washington and sent Philadelphia to an NL-worst 3-10 record.
Astros 7, Reds 2 -- Jason Lane hit a three-run homer in the eighth, completing a rally that lifted Houston over host Cincinnati.
Brewers 7, Pirates 3 -- Claudio Vargas (1-0) struck out a career-high 11 over six innings and Bill Hall drove in three runs to help Milwaukee to the home victory.