Rodriguez Pops Out With Bases Loaded In 9th As Yankees Fall To Angels
By HOWIE RUMBERG, AP Sports Writer
NEW YORK (AP) _ Kevin Jepsen got Alex Rodriguez to pop out with the bases loaded in the ninth inning and the Los Angeles Angels took advantage of New York’s baserunning follies to beat the Yankees 10-8 Sunday.
With seemingly no lead safe recently at Yankee Stadium, Mark Teixeira hit a two-run homer in the ninth off Ernesto Frieri to make it 10-7, the first runs off the closer since he joined the Angels on May 3 — a span of 26 1-3 innings.
After a walk to Nick Swisher, Scott Downs relieved with a 1-0 count to Raul Ibanez. Ibanez knocked the glove off Downs and reached for an infield single. Andruw Jones struck out, Russell Martin had a fielder’s choice and Derek Jeter walked to load the bases.
Downs then walked Curtis Granderson to make it 10-8 before Jepsen came on and retired Rodriguez for his first save since 2009, helping the Angels avoid their first three-game sweep in New York since 1995.
Albert Pujols and Erick Aybar hit consecutive home runs off Ivan Nova in the first inning for Los Angeles. Maicer Izturis had a go-ahead, two-run shot in the sixth and Mark Trumbo connected in the ninth. The American League rivals combined for eight homers on an ideal day for the long ball.
Trailing 2-0, the Yankees rallied for the third straight game to take a lead behind Rodriguez’s two-run homer in the bottom of the first and Jeter’s RBI single in the second.
But the Angels had a comeback of their own this time. Albert Callaspo hit a tying sacrifice fly on the 10th pitch of
the at-bat in the sixth _ on a spectacular diving catch by Granderson. Izturis then homered for the first time in nearly a
Granderson and Eric Chavez connected to make it 6-5 after seven innings. Mike Trout’s RBI double, Bobby Wilson’s run-scoring single and Erick Aybar’s squeeze play in the eighth gave the Angels what appeared to be a comfortable margin.
Jered Weaver (11-1) was hardly at his best in winning his fifth straight start since coming off the disabled list June 20, giving up more than one earned run for the first time since May 18. He allowed five runs and 10 hits in seven innings.
The Yankees spared him more trouble by running into four outs on the basepaths, including a big blunder in the third inning.
With one out, runners on first and third and Teixeira at bat, Robinson Cano was caught off first base. While he was in a rundown, Rodriguez inched off third. After Cano was tagged out for a caught stealing, the indecisive Rodriguez made a late attempt to score but Aybar, the shortstop, threw home and A-Rod was easily tagged out by Wilson.
Rodrigruez snapped a 49 at-bat stretch without a homer, hitting No. 643 of his career in the first. The two-run shot gave him his first multi-RBI game since tying Lou Gehrig’s grand slam record June 12. His two-run homer snapped Weaver’s scoreless streak at 20 2-3 innings.
Jeter singled in a run in the second for a 3-2 lead, but he was caught rounding first for the third out of the inning.
Ibanez grounded into a double play in the fourth.
In the fifth, Eric Chavez got caught when Weaver caught Martin’s popped up bunt and doubled up Chavez at first.
Nova (10-4) breezed through the Angels’ lineup after a rocky first, yielding only two hits until Kendrys Morales led off the sixth with a single. He was pulled after allowing Trout’s double and Aybar’s single to open the seventh.
Trout scored on Pujols’ double-play grounder, closing Nova’s line. He gave up six runs and nine hits.
Granderson made an over-the-shoulder catch slamming into the wall in straightaway center field for the second out of the third inning. He received a loud ovation as he ran off the field at the end of the inning and when he led off the bottom half.
NOTES: Cano tied a career high with a hit in an 18th straight game. … The Angels placed RHP Jordan Walden on the 15-day disabled list because of a strained biceps, retroactive to July 9. OF Kole Calhoun was recalled from Triple-A Salt Lake to take Walden’s roster spot. His bags were lost en route and he had to borrow cleats and a glove. … Yankees GM Brian Cashman said the asking price on the trade market is too high and that the Yankees will likely be minor players if they do make any moves before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)