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Swisher, Yankees get TKO

Ailing Posada watches as homer trips Orioles

Associated Press / September 9, 2010

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Minus their star catcher, the New York Yankees waited at home plate in a merry pack of pinstripes as Nick Swisher circled the bases following his game-winning home run.

Jorge Posada was missing — but he could be back soon.

Swisher hit a two-run homer off Koji Uehara in the bottom of the ninth inning yesterday to give New York a 3-2 victory over the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium that was soon tempered by news of Posada’s aching head.

Following the game, Yankees manager Joe Girardi revealed that Posada felt concussion symptoms Tuesday night after getting hit by a foul ball. The switch-hitting slugger sat out yesterday and was sent to New York-Presbyterian Hospital during the game to see a neurology specialist.

“Obviously, it’s a concern,’’ Swisher said.

A little while later, the Yankees announced tests came back negative and Posada was cleared to play. He is day to day and is expected to travel with the team on its upcoming trip.

“He’s a big part of our ballclub and hopefully he’ll be back in the lineup in a couple of days,’’ Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner said before the results were announced.

Losing Posada would be a major blow to the AL East leaders, trying to repeat as World Series champions. Several big league stars have been sidelined by concussions for extended stretches this season, including Minnesota slugger Justin Morneau and New York Mets outfielder Jason Bay.

With the Orioles closing in on their first three-game sweep in the Bronx since 1986, Alex Rodriguez opened the ninth with a single on the first pitch from Uehara (1-1). Robinson Cano flied out and Swisher, hobbled by a stiff left knee, drove a 2-0 pitch to the opposite field and into the Baltimore bullpen in left-center.

Padres 4, Dodgers 0 — Rookie Cory Luebke struck out seven in six sparkling innings, Luis Durango hit a key two-run single, and host San Diego added to its lead in the NL West.

The Padres have won three consecutive games since losing 10 in a row and are two ahead of San Francisco after the Giants lost at Arizona.

Diamondbacks 3, Giants 1 — Daniel Hudson pitched seven effective innings and host Arizona snapped San Francisco’s four-game winning streak.

Twins 4, Royals 3 — Brian Duensing gave up one run and struck out seven over eight innings and host Minnesota continued an impressive run of success against Kansas City ace Zack Greinke to complete a three-game sweep. Greinke (8-12) fell to 0-4 with an 8.18 ERA against the Twins this season.

Phillies 10, Marlins 6 — Ryan Howard homered and had six RBIs and host Philadelphia backed Cole Hamels with a rare burst of the run support he had been missing most of the season as the Phillies won their third straight. Howard hit his 28th homer of the season and the NL East-leading Phillies tied a season high with 17 hits.

Hamels (10-10) has received the fourth-lowest run support (3.18 runs per start) of any starter this season entering the game.

Braves 9, Pirates 3 — Omar Infante had three hits, Derek Lowe beat Pittsburgh for the 10th straight time, and visiting Atlanta snapped a three-game losing streak that had dropped the Braves out of first place in the NL East.

Rangers 8, Blue Jays 1 — Ian Kinsler led off the game with a home run, Derek Holland won for the first time since mid-May, and AL West-leading Texas stopped its losing streak at five.

Tigers 5, White Sox 1 — Jeremy Bonderman pitched eight strong innings and host Detroit handed Chicago its second sloppy loss in a row. Chicago, trying to catch Minnesota in the AL Central, entered Tuesday’s game with a seven-game winning streak, but has been outscored, 14-2, by the Tigers over the last two nights, including seven unearned runs.

Rockies 9, Reds 2 — Troy Tulowitzki homered twice and host Colorado posted its sixth straight victory despite losing starter Aaron Cook to a leg injury. Cook was struck in the lower right leg by a line drive off the bat of Joey Votto in the sixth inning.

Brewers 8, Cardinals 1 — Ryan Braun hit a three-run homer and host Milwaukee roughed up St. Louis rookie Jaime Garcia.

Mets 3, Nationals 2 — Pinch hitter Nick Evans hit a tiebreaking double in the seventh inning, rewarding R.A. Dickey for an effective start and helping New York to a road victory.

Astros 4, Cubs 0 — Brett Myers struck out eight in seven crisp innings and Hunter Pence homered to lift visiting Houston.

Angels 4, Indians 3 — Jeff Mathis drove in the winning run with a sacrifice fly in the 16th inning as host Los Angeles outlasted Cleveland in the longest game of the season for both teams.

Athletics 4, Mariners 3 — Coco Crisp homered and drove in three runs to help host Oakland beat Seattle.

Notables

■Wilson Ramos hit his first major league homer for the Nationals.

Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter went 0 for 4 with a throwing error, dropping his average to .262.

■Baltimore is 21-14 under Buck Showalter.

■Marlins shortstop Hanley Ramirez was held out of the starting lineup because of a sore back.

■The crowd of 10,616 for the Texas-Toronto game marked the second straight night the Blue Jays have played before fewer than 11,000 fans.

Ryan Braun joined Brewers teammates Prince Fielder (30), Corey Hart (27), Rickie Weeks (26), and Casey McGehee (20) with at least 20 homers.

■Houston’s Brett Myers has lasted at least six innings in all 29 of his starts — the longest streak in team history and longest in the majors since Curt Schilling’s run of 35 straight for Arizona in 2002.

■The Cubs are 26-41 against NL Central opponents.

Pittsburgh is 47-92 with 23 games remaining and is on pace to lose 107 games.

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