Baseball

Yanks bounce back into first

The New York Yankees bounced back into first place in the American League East on Tuesday night.

In the National League, Philadelphia gained a game on Atlanta in the East; and Cincinnati and St. Louis both lost in the Central.

Yankees 8, Rays 7 (10) —Jorge Posada led off the 10th inning with a pinch-hit homer for New York.

Robinson Cano and Alex Rodriguez also homered for the Yankees, who squandered a six-run lead before tying it at 7 in the sixth on Cano's RBI double. Posada drove a 2-0 pitch from Dan Wheeler (2-3) over the center-field wall, setting off cheers from a large contingent of New York fans among the crowd of 28,713 at Tropicana Field.

The Rays erased the 6-0 deficit with a seven-run fifth inning that Willy Aybar finished with a three-run, pinch-hit homer off Boone Logan. Slumping slugger Carlos Pena began the rally with his first homer since Aug. 30.

David Robertson (4-4) pitched the ninth and Mariano Rivera finished up for his 30th save in 33 opportunities. A night after Reid Brignac's 11th-inning homer gave Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead and put the Rays atop the standings by one half-game, the Yankees stopped a season-high four-game losing streak and regained the division lead.

Cano hit a two-run homer off Rays starter Matt Garza in the third and delivered his game-tying double off Jeremy Hellickson. Rodriguez also went deep against Garza, hitting his 606th career homer in the fifth.

Rodriguez also had a RBI single in the third before scoring on Cano's 27th homer of the season. Cano's run-scoring double in the sixth gave the All-Star second baseman a career-best 98 RBIs.

The Rays threatened in the 10th with Carl Crawford reaching on a broken bat single and stealing second with one out. Rivera escaped, though, when Matt Joyce flied to right fielder Greg Golson, who threw out Crawford trying to advance after the catch.

Mark Teixeira's sacrifice fly during a four-run third snapped a string of 16 consecutive scoreless innings for the Yankees that began in the seventh inning of Sunday's 4-1 loss at Texas. Cano's homer ended the team's longest homerless drought since it went four games without one from June 19-22, 2008.

Garza allowed six runs and nine hits over 4 2-3 innings. The outing came on the heels of another poor performance in which he blew a 4-0 lead while yielding four homers and six runs overall in 4 1-3 innings of an 11-5 loss at Boston.

Phillies 2, Marlins 1 — Cole Hamels had a season-high 13 strikeouts in 6 2/3 innings, and Philadelphia increased its lead in the NL East to two games.

Hamels (11-10) threw a career-high 127 pitches and allowed only one run. The left-hander won his fourth consecutive start and won for the first time in seven career starts in Miami.

Shane Victorino scored both runs for the Phillies, who totaled only five hits and won despite going 0 for 11 with runners in scoring position.

Florida ended Hamels' streak of 25 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings in the first, bunching three hits, including Dan Uggla's RBI infield single. But the Marlins managed only three hits the rest of the way.

Brad Lidge, pitching for the first time since Sept. 6, earned his 22nd save in 27 chances with a perfect ninth.

Philadelphia beat Florida for the fourth time in a row and improved to 12-5 against the Marlins. The Phillies have won 12 of their past 13 series, and ace Roy Halladay will help them try for a three-game sweep Wednesday.

The Phils have won 16 of their past 19 road games.

Nationals 6, Braves 0 — It was just another game for Livan Hernandez. Not so for the Atlanta Braves.

Hernandez homered and limited Atlanta to five hits in eight innings, ending a six-game losing streak.

Atlanta held a one-game lead over San Francisco in the wild card race. The Giants had a late game against Los Angeles.

Hernandez (10-11) walked two, struck out six and hit a batter. Only one runner reached second.

The 35-year-old right-hander varied his pitches from a 61 mph curve in the second inning to Derrek Lee to nothing faster than an 85 mph fastball. He threw 118 pitches, 75 strikes.

"I just go out and do my job. I just try to beat somebody whether it's against a playoff team or not. I felt good in the bullpen before the game and I had a good sinker, slider and curve ball," said Hernandez.

"He had, honestly, perfect control all night long," said Atlanta manager Bobby Cox.

"You really never know what's coming at you. It could be anything from 60 mph to 85 mph," said Lee.

Cubs 7, Cardinals 2 — Randy Wells allowed five hits over eight innings and had two hits and two RBIs for Chicago.

Xavier Nady had three hits and three RBIs and Darwin Barney had three hits and an RBI in a 15-hit attack for the Cubs, who have outscored St. Louis 12-3 while taking the first two games of a three-game series. The Cardinals remained seven games behind NL Central-leading Cincinnati with 19 games to go.

The Cardinals managed six hits — including an RBI double by Matt Holliday in the fourth and Colby Rasmus' 22nd homer in the ninth off Sean Marshall — without Albert Pujols, the three-time NL MVP.

Diamondbacks 3, Reds 1 — Arizona finally found the right combination to beat the NL Central leaders — the kid and the catch.

Arizona rookie Daniel Hudson shut down the NL's top offense for eight innings, and right fielder Justin Upton made a game-ending catch with the bases loaded.

Arizona beat the NL Central leaders for the first time in five games this season, taking it down to the final pitch.

Hudson (7-2) gave up four hits and fanned eight before leaving with a 3-0 lead. Juan Gutierrez let the Reds load the bases in the ninth with two outs, then hit Drew Stubb to force in a run. Ramon Hernandez followed with a liner toward the gap that Upton snagged while running full-speed and stretching as far as he could.

"That was a Hall-of-Fame play right there," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "I didn't think he had a chance to catch it. That shows the importance of defense right there. Defense saved the game for them tonight."

A night after they drew a season-low 12,061 fans, the Reds sold 16,973 tickets for one of their pet promotion games — fans were allowed to bring dogs.

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