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Red Sox rally on Rivera again, hand Yankees first loss

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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NEW YORK -- The Boston Red Sox pulled off another comeback against Mariano Rivera, then turned their thoughts to Terry Francona.

Playing without their ailing manager, the Red Sox rallied for five runs off Rivera in the ninth inning -- helped by Alex Rodriguez's costly error -- and beat the New York Yankees 7-3 Wednesday to avoid a season-opening sweep.

Francona was taken to a hospital in the morning with tightness in his chest. He was resting there comfortably awaiting test results, the team said. Bench coach Brad Mills filled in for him.

"We're just concerned about Tito and what's going on," Mills said. "They're a great bunch of guys, a great bunch of coaches, and they did a great job."

Derek Jeter left the game after he was hit in the helmet by a pitch and was taken to a hospital for a precautionary CT scan. The results were normal and Jeter was expected to play Friday night against Baltimore, the Yankees said.

The teams play three more games next week at Fenway Park beginning with Boston's home opener Monday, when the Red Sox will receive their World Series rings.

"It was a huge win to get us on the board," Boston knuckleballer Tim Wakefield said.

Rodriguez and Tino Martinez homered for the Yankees, who went ahead in the eighth without a hit. Gary Sheffield drove in the tiebreaking run with a sacrifice fly.

Rivera entered in the ninth with a 3-2 lead for the second consecutive day and blew it again. He issued a leadoff walk to Bill Mueller before consecutive singles by Mark Bellhorn and Johnny Damon loaded the bases with none out.

"Even though I walked Mueller, I made my pitches," Rivera said. "After that, I was getting groundballs that were going through the holes. There's nothing you can do against that. I'm fine."

After Trot Nixon struck out, Manny Ramirez hit a routine grounder to Rodriguez at third. He should have been able to get at least a force play at the plate and possibly a game-ending double play, but he bobbled the ball and the tying run scored.

"When I went down with two hands, I think I locked myself up," Rodriguez said. "I was going to go to second before the bobble. Then I knew I still had Bill Mueller at home, but then I bobbled it again."

David Ortiz drove in the go-ahead run with a dribbler to the right side, and Edgar Renteria made it 6-3 with a two-run single.

After walking Doug Mirabelli, Rivera was lifted -- a rare sight. He walked off the mound to a healthy dose of boos, but he thought those must have come from Red Sox fans.

"I think it's inexcusable if the boos were from Yankee fans because they wouldn't be crawling all over themselves to get into this ballpark if it weren't for him," New York manager Joe Torre said.

Pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre had a similar reaction.

"I was very surprised by that. Everything he's done here and in this ballpark, I was shocked. But that's New York," Stottlemyre said.

The final run scored on Felix Rodriguez's wild pitch.

Rivera (1-1) allowed five runs -- one earned -- and three walks in two-thirds of an inning. He also gave up three hits and threw 38 pitches.

"I don't want to say he lost his cool, but he definitely lost his command," Stottlemyre said.

The All-Star closer has blown his last four save chances against the Red Sox, including two in the 2004 playoffs, and six opportunities in all against Boston since the start of last season.

He yielded Jason Varitek's tying homer in the ninth on Tuesday, but Jeter bailed out Rivera with a game-winning homer in the bottom half.

"Yesterday's game had nothing to do with today," Rivera said.

Mike Timlin (1-0) got two outs for the win. His first pitch hit Jeter in the left shoulder and then deflected off his ear flap, knocking Jeter's helmet off and sending him sprawling to the dirt.

He remained in the game to run the bases, but was replaced at shortstop by Rey Sanchez in the ninth.

"He heard some ringing in his ears. He felt a little woozy," Torre said. "Timlin wasn't trying to hit him. He was just trying to rush a little, and his ball was all over the place."

The Red Sox got a strong outing from Wakefield, who allowed only three hits in 6 2/3 innings -- including solo homers by Rodriguez and Martinez.

Making his first start of the year, Mike Mussina gave up nine hits but worked out of trouble. Helped by three double plays, he limited the Red Sox to two runs in six innings.

Kevin Millar's two-run single gave Boston the lead in the fourth.

Rodriguez homered to center in the bottom half, his first of the season. Martinez tied it at 2 when he connected in the fifth, his first since returning to the Yankees. A fan favorite in New York while winning four World Series titles from 1996-01, Martinez got a huge ovation and popped out of the dugout for a curtain call.

Notes:
  • Francona was not expected to travel with the team Wednesday night to Toronto, where the Red Sox open a three-game series Friday night.
  • Millar left in the sixth with a cramp in his left knee but is not expected to miss any time. After going 3-for-3, he was replaced by David McCarty.
  • Boston outhit the Yankees 14-4.
  • The Red Sox have not been swept in a three-game series to start the season since 1996 at Texas.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Joe Torre consoles and pulls closer Mariano Rivera after another tough outing against Boston.
 
Joe Torre consoles and pulls closer Mariano Rivera after another tough outing against Boston. (AP)
 

Players of the Game
Boston

D. Ortiz
AB 5
R 0
H 3
HR 0
RBI 1
New York

M. Mussina
IP 6.0
H 9
ER 2
BB 2
K 2
 
Boston Red Sox
Johnny Damon, CF5120001 .286
Trot Nixon, RF2100314 .000
Manny Ramirez, LF5211002 .077
David Ortiz, DH5031000 .462
Kevin Millar, 1B3032000 .500
    David McCarty, PR-1B1100101 .000
Edgar Renteria, SS5022002 .154
Doug Mirabelli, C4010104 .250
Bill Mueller, 3B4100116 .273
Mark Bellhorn, 2B4120020 .417
Totals3871466420 
Batting
2B - David Ortiz (2, Sturtze)
RBI - Manny Ramirez (1), David Ortiz (2), Kevin Millar 2 (2), Edgar Renteria 2 (2)
2-OUT RBI - Edgar Renteria 2 (2)
PK - Johnny Damon (1, Sturtze)
Team LOB - 10
Boston Red Sox
Tim Wakefield 6.2322242 2.70
Alan Embree 0.2011100 4.50
Mike Timlin (W,1-0) 0.2000200 0.00
Keith Foulke 1100000 4.50
HBP - Jeter (by Mike Timlin)
Pitches-Strikes - Tim Wakefield 99-60, Alan Embree 13-6, Mike Timlin 17-7, Keith Foulke 16-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tim Wakefield 9-6, Mike Timlin 1-1
Batters Faced - Tim Wakefield 24, Alan Embree 3, Mike Timlin 5, Keith Foulke 4
New York Yankees
Derek Jeter, SS3010010 .364
    Rey Sanchez, SS0000000 .000
Alex Rodriguez, 3B3111100 .250
Gary Sheffield, RF3001000 .182
Hideki Matsui, LF3000110 .500
Jorge Posada, C4000003 .273
Jason Giambi, DH2000110 .143
    Bubba Crosby, PR-DH0000000 .000
   a- Ruben Sierra, PH-DH1010000 .333
Tino Martinez, 1B4111002 .125
Bernie Williams, CF3000111 .000
Tony Womack, 2B3100102 .333
Totals29343548 
a-doubled for Crosby in the 9th
Batting
2B - Ruben Sierra (2, Foulke)
HR - Alex Rodriguez (1, Wakefield), Tino Martinez (1, Wakefield)
SF - Gary Sheffield (1)
RBI - Alex Rodriguez (2), Gary Sheffield (3), Tino Martinez (1)
2-OUT RBI - Tino Martinez (1)
CS - Derek Jeter (1, 3rd base by Wakefield/Mirabelli)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Rodriguez-Womack-T. Martinez, Womack-Jeter, Mussina-Womack-T. Martinez
E - Alex Rodriguez (1, Misplayed grounder)
New York Yankees
Mike Mussina 6922220 3.00
Tanyon Sturtze 2200100 0.00
Mariano Rivera (BS,2; L,1-1) 0.2351310 10.80
Felix Rodriguez 0.1000010 0.00
WP - Felix Rodriguez (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Mike Mussina 96-56, Tanyon Sturtze 19-11, Mariano Rivera 38-18, Felix Rodriguez 6-3
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mike Mussina 7-6, Tanyon Sturtze 2-3, Mariano Rivera 2-0
Batters Faced - Mike Mussina 26, Tanyon Sturtze 8, Mariano Rivera 9, Felix Rodriguez 1
Game Information
Attendance - 55165
Game Time - 3:22
Temperature - 67
Umpires - Home - Mike DiMuro, First Base - Tom Hallion, Second Base - Joe West, Third Base - Brian Gorman