September 10, 2014
New York Yankees starting pitcher Chris Capuano struggles to read the signs during the first inning of a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium in New York, Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Capuano was taken out of the game after allowing fo
Kathy Willens

NEW YORK (AP) After starter Chris Capuano was booed off the mound in the first inning, the New York Yankees' makeshift lineup turned the mood in the Bronx a bit more festive.

Mark Teixeira made up for a botched foul pop in the Rays' four-run first inning with a go-ahead triple in the fifth, Brian McCann homered and drove in three runs, and the Yankees used their biggest comeback of the season to beat Tampa Bay 8-5 Wednesday night.

''There was no panic,'' Teixeira said. ''We just slowly got the job done as the night went on.''

The Yankees, who moved within 4 1/2 games of a playoff spot with 19 remaining, did not get off to a good start.

Teixeira overran leadoff batter Ben Zobrist's foul ball behind first base for no play. Zobrist then singled for his 1,000th career hit. Five of the next six Rays reached before Capuano was lifted in the shortest start of his career.

By the end of the 30-minute top of the first, New York trailed 4-0.

McCann got the rally started with a homer in the bottom half to end Jake Odorizzi's scoreless streak at 14 1-3 innings.

Filling in for injured Martin Prado, Chris Young hit his first homer with the Yankees - he was cut by the Mets on Aug. 9 - to tie it at 4 in the fourth. Young added an RBI double in the eighth and finished a triple shy of the cycle.

Five relievers combined for 8 2-3 gritty innings, allowing seven hits, including Evan Longoria's 20th homer in the ninth. Preston Claiborne (3-0) pitched two innings for the win.

''We just know if we hold the game the way it is our guys could come back,'' said Dellin Betances, who pitched 1 1-3 scoreless innings. ''It was a great win.''

With a full moon peeking through the clouds in center field, the Yankees closed the gap to 4-3 in the third with the help of catcher Ryan Hanigan's errant throw on ball four.

Young, who singled, was running on a full-count pitch to Jacoby Ellsbury. Hanigan's throw on ball four went into center field, allowing Young to advance to third on the error. Ellsbury stole second and, one out later, McCann lined a two-run single to left field.

''I thought it was a close pitch so I thought there was a chance we're going to get the call, so that's why I just came up throwing,'' Hanigan said.

McCann was hit by a pitch from Odorizzi (10-12) to start the fifth and scored when Wil Myers had trouble with Teixeira's liner into the right-field corner. Teixeira raced into third standing up with his first triple since July 6, 2012, at Boston.

''It shows the character of the guys in that room, that they're going to keep fighting,'' Yankees manager Joe Girardi said.

That was the end of the night for Odorizzi, charged with six runs and five hits in 4 1-3 innings.


Rays: RHP Nathan Karns (0-0) will take the rotation spot of Drew Smyly, who has been shut down for the season after throwing 153 innings combined with Tampa Bay and Detroit.

Yankees: DH-OF Carlos Beltran was scratched from the lineup about 90 minutes before the game because of right elbow soreness. Afterward, he said he will give it a few days before deciding if he will have to end his season early to have surgery to remove the bone spur that has been troubling him since mid-May. ''It's been frustrating,'' Beltran said. ... Prado (hamstring) and OF Brett Gardner (abdominal strain) were also out of the lineup again.


The AL East rivals play the finale of a three-game series Thursday with a matchup of stingy starters: the Yankees' Michael Pineda (3-4) vs. the Rays' Alex Cobb (9-7). Pineda has not allowed more than two earned runs in any of his nine career starts for New York. Cobb has yielded two runs or fewer in 11 straight starts, a franchise record.

1,000 HITS

Zobrist's accomplishment was especially meaningful to his manager. ''When he first came here I would not have anticipated 1,000 hits,'' Joe Maddon said. ''He went back to the minor leagues and came back reinvented.''


When asked how a catcher should position himself for a play at home plate on a hit to left field, Girardi, a former All-Star catcher, jumped up from his seat in the press conference room to demonstrate. He used the corner of the riser as the ''plate'' and proceeded to show the media how he was taught to give a lane to home plate and ''then take it away'' by sidestepping into the runner's path.

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