With the help of a big offensive performance, Carl Pavano got his first win with the New York Yankees.
Pavano scattered seven hits over eight innings, and Jorge Posada hit a three-run homer to lead the Yankees over the Blue Jays, 11-2, last night in the opener of a two-game series in Toronto.
New York entered with five losses in six games, tied with Tampa Bay for last in the AL East at 5-9. But for the second time in three games, the Yankees took a big early lead, going ahead, 7-1, in the fourth inning.
Pavano (1-2), who signed a $39.95 million, four-year contract, pitched well but didn't get a decision against the Red Sox in his first start, then was knocked out by a line drive off his head against Baltimore, and pitched poorly against the Orioles in his third.
He was in control against the Blue Jays, allowing two runs, just one of them earned. He struck out three and walked none.
New York backed him with 14 hits. Posada went 3 for 5, falling a triple shy of a cycle, and drove in four runs. He had an RBI double in the four-run fourth, singled in the fifth, and hit his first home run of the season in the sixth.
Former Yankee Ted Lilly (0-2) allowed six runs and six hits -- including five doubles -- in 3 1/3 innings.
White Sox 9, Tigers 1 -- Joe Crede hit a three-run homer, Jermaine Dye had a two-run drive, and Jon Garland pitched eight solid innings to lift Chicago over host Detroit. The Central-leading White Sox (11-4) have won three straight and are off to their best 15-game start since 1981.
Garland allowed one run and five hits, improving to 3-0 for the first time. He has won three straight starts for the first time in three years.
Wilfredo Ledezma (1-1) gave up six runs and eight hits. Since allowing only a run in his first start, Ledezma has given up 10 runs and 16 hits over 11 innings in his last two outings.
Rangers 12, Devil Rays 10 -- Rod Barajas hit his first career grand slam, Kevin Mench had a bases-loaded triple, and visiting Texas hung on after nearly blowing an eight-run lead.
Barajas was mired in a 1-for-14 slide before putting the Rangers up, 6-1, with a homer on the first pitch off John Webb during a five-run fourth inning. Mench drove in three runs in a four-run fifth.
Angels 2, Indians 0 -- Bartolo Colon pitched four-hit ball over eight innings and Chone Figgins homered to lead Los Angeles over visiting Cleveland. Colon (3-1) threw 115 pitches, striking out six and walking two before Francisco Rodriguez pitched a perfect ninth for his third save.
Colon, who allowed 68 home runs over the past two seasons, has given up only one homer in 27 2/3 innings through his first four starts.
Twins 5, Royals 4 -- Shannon Stewart's RBI single through a drawn-in infield in the eighth inning lifted host Minnesota.
Johan Santana, unbeaten in 19 starts since July 17, started the game less than an hour after the birth of his second child. Santana led, 3-0, and was removed after seven innings with the scored tied at 4.
Mariners 7, Athletics 6 -- At Seattle, Greg Dobbs drove in three runs with a pinch-hit double off rookie Huston Street in the seventh inning, leading the Mariners over Oakland.