Tanaka, Teixeira help Yanks top Indians 3-2 after A-Rod news
NEW YORK (AP) Not long after Alex Rodriguez revealed his farewell plans, Mark Teixeira showed he still has plenty left in the tank.
Masahiro Tanaka rebounded from two rocky outings, Didi Gregorius homered on his bobblehead day and the New York Yankees held off the Cleveland Indians 3-2 Sunday after announcing that Rodriguez will play his final game in pinstripes this week.
Teixeira, two days since disclosing his own plans to retire at the end of the season, hit an RBI double and dove toward first base to get a crucial out on defense. He has an extra-base hit in four of his past five games.
''Alex's thunder is always a little louder than mine anyway,'' a smiling Teixeira said, drawing laughs.
Dellin Betances got four outs for his second save as New York took two of three from the AL Central leaders and won the season series 5-2.
Cleveland, which remained two games ahead of Detroit, has dropped five of seven. Cleanup hitter Mike Napoli was ejected by plate umpire Lance Barrett after getting called out on strikes in the eighth inning.
An irate Napoli, who jawed extensively with Barrett after strike two as well, screamed and pointed in the umpire's face and might have nicked him with the bill of his helmet.
''It's been a difficult week, but I think everybody's ready to move on,'' Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis said.
Hit hard by the Mets in a Subway Series loss last week, Tanaka (8-4) was lifted with a 3-0 lead following Rajai Davis' leadoff double in the seventh.
Carlos Carrasco (7-6) also bounced back from a poor start and struck out nine in seven solid innings for the Indians, who tried to rally late.
''We just didn't get that big hit,'' Davis said.
Davis scored when Adam Warren gave up an RBI single to No. 9 batter Roberto Perez, his second hit of the day after entering 2 for 40 (.050) this season.
With two on, the 36-year-old Teixeira went to his knees for a sliding stop of Francisco Lindor's two-out grounder behind first base. Teixeira gathered himself and barely beat Lindor to the bag with his outstretched mitt as both players dove headfirst.
The effort drew cheers from a crowd of 39,720 that also gave Tanaka a warm ovation as he walked off the mound.
''A really impressive play,'' Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. '' That's Tex. He gives everything he's got.''
Cleveland scored an unearned run on a wild pitch in the eighth and nearly got something going in the ninth.
Chris Gimenez short-hopped the left-field fence with a leadoff drive but was held to a single by Brett Gardner. Second baseman Starlin Castro then started a difficult double play on Carlos Santana's sharp grounder, and Betances struck out Kipnis to end it.
Gardner hit a leadoff triple in the first and scored on Jacoby Ellsbury's sacrifice fly.
Tanaka struck out eight and walked none.
''It might have been his best start of the year,'' Girardi said. ''I thought he was tremendous.''
About 2 hours before the game, Rodriguez and the rebuilding Yankees (56-55) announced the slumping slugger will play Friday night against Tampa Bay at Yankee Stadium and then be released. After that, he plans to become a special adviser and instructor with the organization next year.
''This is a tough day. I love this game and I love this team,'' the 41-year-old Rodriguez said, often choking up. ''And today I'm saying goodbye to both.''
New York will pay A-Rod the remainder of the approximately $27 million he's owed as part of his $275 million, 10-year contract.
Rodriguez, relegated to the bench again Sunday, said the agreement arose out of conversations over the past few days with Yankees Managing General Partner Hal Steinbrenner.
''Hopefully Friday will be a great day for Alex,'' Teixeira said. ''We're going to miss Alex in this clubhouse.''
HARD TO EXPLAIN
Ellsbury was inexplicably doubled off first base on a foul popup near third. ''(His) answer made about as much sense as him going. All I can tell you was it was a brain cramp - a real brain cramp,'' Girardi said. ''That's a first for me.''
Yankees: Rookie catcher Gary Sanchez was rested after playing consecutive games behind the plate. Austin Romine caught Tanaka, and Brian McCann was the DH. ... Castro also was rested in favor of Rob Refsnyder but entered on defense in the eighth and appeared in his 1,000th major league game.
Indians: Following a day off, Cleveland opens a two-game interleague series at NL East-leading Washington. RHP Trevor Bauer (7-5, 4.08 ERA) starts Tuesday night against All-Star RHP Max Scherzer (12-6, 2.87). RHP Josh Tomlin will pitch Wednesday for the Indians instead of RHP Mike Clevinger.
Yankees: RHP Luis Severino (1-6, 6.02 ERA) makes his first major league start since May 13 when New York begins a three-game series Tuesday night in Boston. RHP Rick Porcello (14-3, 3.46) goes for the Red Sox.