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Archive for Sunday, July 14, 2002

American League Roundup: Posada powers Yankees to rout

New York pounds Cleveland, 14-5; Detroit claims rare sweep over Chisox

July 14, 2002

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— Jorge Posada hit a grand slam and tied his career high with six RBIs and still would not let up.

"You have to think the game is 2-1 and can't think about the lead," Posada said after powering the New York Yankees with the help of Alfonso Soriano's two home runs and four RBIs to a 14-5 rout of the Cleveland Indians on Saturday night.

Soriano hit the second pitch of the game by Ryan Drese (8-7) into the left-field bleachers for his 21st homer. He added a three-run shot off Drese on an 0-2 count during a seven-run second. It was Soriano's third career two-homer game all this season.

"When you try to hit homers, they never come," Soriano said. "I go to home plate and just try to hit the ball hard."

Posada hit his second slam of the season and fifth of his career to highlight a five-run third off reliever Jake Westbrook. The catcher also had a two-run double in New York's big second inning.

"Those were two great at-bats," Yankees manager Joe Torre said. "Both times he was down 0-2 in the count."

Earlier Saturday, the Yankees put Roger Clemens on the 15-day disabled list after he re-aggravated his strained right groin in the Yankees' 2-1, 10-inning loss Friday night. Right-hander Mike Thurman was recalled from Triple-A Columbus and pitched the final two innings.

David Wells (10-5) won his third straight start despite giving up a season-high 11 hits over seven innings. The left-hander again got great run support. The Yankees have scored 115 runs in his 18 starts, an average of 6.4 a game.

"When you get a lot of runs like that you've got to smile," Wells said. "It's not going to happen every night."

Wells said Posada's value to the team behind the plate is just as important as his offense.

"Jorge knows me better than anyone," Wells said. "I had not pitched in 10 days and started arching my back. He noticed it and I made the adjustment. Nobody else saw it."

Posada said he wanted to make sure Wells did not develop bad habits while pitching with the big lead.

"I saw him rocking back instead of driving forward," Posada said. "He got back into a groove."

It was the third time in six games this season against New York that the Indians gave up 10 or more runs.

The Yankees got seven runs and seven hits in the second off Drese. The only out the rookie right-hander recorded in the inning came when John Vander Wal, who had singled, was thrown out at third by center fielder Milton Bradley while trying to advance on a single by Rondell White.

Bernie Williams had an RBI single, Robin Ventura a run-scoring double and Posada a bloop two-run double in the rally to make it 8-0.

Drese gave up eight runs, eight hits and three walks over 11/3 innings, his shortest outing in 22 career starts.

"I stunk," Drese said. "They hit every kind of pitch I threw. I'm extremely upset with myself."

Blue Jays 4, Red Sox 1

Toronto Chris Carpenter pitched seven sharp innings, and Eric Hinske went 4-for-4 to lead Toronto past Boston. Carlos Delgado, Josh Phelps and Hinske hit RBI doubles for the Blue Jays, who have won two in a row against Boston after losing 11 consecutive games to the Red Sox this season.

Tigers 5-3, White Sox 3-1

Detroit Bobby Higginson hit a two-run homer as Detroit completed its first doubleheader sweep in nearly nine years. Carlos Pena hit a tiebreaking RBI single in the eighth inning and drove in three runs to lift the Tigers to a victory in the first game. It was Detroit's first doubleheader sweep since Sept. 26, 1993, at Baltimore. Mike Maroth (2-3) struck out seven in seven-plus innings, allowing one run and five hits. In the opener, reliever Fernando Rodney (1-2) got his first major league victory despite allowing the tying run in the eighth.

D'Rays 4, Mariners 3 (10)

St. Petersburg, Fla. Ben Grieve singled through a drawn-in infield with the bases loaded in the 10th inning as Tampa Bay snapped an eight-game losing streak with a victory over Seattle. Ichiro Suzuki homered twice in a game for the first time for Seattle, going deep on the first pitch of the game and hitting another solo shot off Tanyon Sturtze in the third inning.

Athletics 6, Orioles 0

Baltimore Barry Zito pitched seven innings of three-hit ball and Miguel Tejada hit a three-run homer as Oakland cruised to its fourth straight victory. Olmedo Saenz also homered and Jermaine Dye had three hits for the A's.

Rangers 8, Twins 1

Minneapolis Alex Rodriguez homered and drove in three runs, Rafael Palmeiro had four RBIs and Kenny Rogers extended his dominance of Minnesota as Texas cruised to a victory. Rodriguez went 2-for-4 with a bases-loaded double in the sixth inning to put the game out of reach.

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