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Ibanez’s Slam Powers Yanks Past Blue Jays

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NEW YORK, NY - JULY 16: Raul Ibanez #27 of the New York Yankees hits a grand slam against the Toronto Blue Jays in the eigth inning during their game on July 16, 2012 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

NEW YORK, NY – JULY 16: Raul Ibanez #27 of the New York Yankees hits a grand slam against the Toronto Blue Jays in the eigth inning during their game on July 16, 2012 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

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By HOWIE RUMBERG
AP Sports Writer

NEW YORK (AP) _ Raul Ibanez hit a tiebreaking grand slam with
two outs in the eighth inning and the New York Yankees beat Toronto
6-3 on Monday after Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista left the game
with a wrist injury.

Ibanez connected on a 3-1 pitch from Jason Frasor for a no-doubt
drive into the first row of the second deck in right field to snap
a 2-all tie.

Bautista injured his left wrist on a swing in the eighth and was
removed from the game. He hit a long foul ball against David
Robertson and immediately grabbed his wrist, dropping into a crouch
outside the batter’s box.

He walked off the field, gently supporting the wrist with his
right hand after being attended to by several Toronto staff
members. After the game, the Blue Jays said Bautista did not break
a bone, but he has a tendon injury and will have an MRI on Tuesday
to determine the extent of the injury.

The majors’ two best power-hitting teams had padded their homer
totals earlier _ with Yankee Stadium specials. Both Russell Martin,
in the second inning, and Adam Lind, in the fourth, hit line drives
into the first row of the short right-field porch.

Alex Rodriguez and Robinson Cano hit one-out singles in the
eighth off Aaron Loup (0-1), recalled from the minors on Sunday.
Frasor came on and hit Mark Teixeira in the foot with a pitch.
Teixeira tried to fake that he jumped out of the way because the
ball bounced into the stands and A-Rod would have scored. Rodriguez
had advanced to second on a passed ball before Cano’s hit and was
on third.

Ibanez then hit his 10th career grand slam. He has been playing
more because Brett Gardner has been on the disabled list since
April 18 with an elbow injury and on Sunday he had his third
setback in his rehabilitation.

Robertson (1-3) pitched a scoreless eighth for the win.

Cody Eppley put two runners on with one out in the ninth. The
Blue Jays scored an unearned run when left fielder Dewayne Wise, a
defensive replacement, misplayed J.P. Arencibia’s single off Rafael
Soriano, who finished for his 23rd save.

Fans hoping to see an offensive outburst from homer-happy clubs
were foiled by the wild but effective outings of Henderson Alvarez
and Phil Hughes.

Alvarez walked a career-high four in six innings. Hughes issued
three free passes in seven innings, and each starter went over 100
pitches.

Hughes was hurt by a one-out walk to Bautista in the sixth. The
All-Star slugger scored from first on Edwin Encarnacion’s double
that tied it 2-all.

Blue Jays manager John Farrell held a meeting before batting
practice to emphasize that Monday began a stretch of six games
against the Yankees and Red Sox that can help define the club’s
season.

How the Blue Jays finish could depend a lot on their battered
bullpen, which took two big hits in the past two days. The team
learned closer Sergio Santos _ out since mid-April _ will have
season-ending shoulder surgery and lefty Luis Perez is scheduled
for reconstructive elbow surgery Tuesday.

Toronto ran into problems Monday after Chad Beck pitched a
scoreless seventh.

Cano extended his hitting streak to a career-high 19 games with
an RBI double past a diving Bautista in right field in the third
after Rodriguez lined a two-base hit to left-center to make it 2-0.

Rodriguez was moved from third base to designated hitter because
he felt stiffness in his neck during batting practice. He went 2
for 4 and scored two runs.

Lind’s homer to right in the fourth made it 2-1 and was the 20th
of the season off Hughes, but only the first in four games.

Rajai Davis snapped an 0-for-25 slump with a one-out double in
the seventh.

NOTES: Yankees LHP CC Sabathia (groin strain) makes his first
start since June 24 on Tuesday. He faces lefty Brett Cecil. … The
division rivals have 15 meetings remaining this season. Toronto
swept a two-game series in May. … All five teams in the AL East
were above .500 entering Monday _ the latest that has happened in
one division since 1995, when the AL West was in a similar position
on July 3, according to STATS LLC.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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