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Tampa Bay at New York

Tampa Bay
N.Y. Yankees
W: L. Vizcaino (8-2) L: J. Howell (1-4)
HR: TB - None   NYY - A. Rodriguez (33), H. Matsui (16)

A-Rod smacks another HR as Yanks crush Rays for DH sweep

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

NEW YORK -- Alex Rodriguez picked up right where Shelley Duncan left off.

Rodriguez hit career homer No. 497 and drove in four runs, helping the New York Yankees beat the Tampa Bay Devil Rays 17-5 Saturday night to complete a sweep of the day-night doubleheader.

In the opener, Duncan's first major league homer capped a five-run sixth inning that carried New York to a 7-3 victory.

Hideki Matsui homered in both games and Luis Vizcaino earned two wins in one day. Matsui has eight homers in his last 16 games.

Johnny Damon drove in four runs in the nightcap and made two great catches during a rare start in left field for New York, which moved within 7½ games of the AL East-leading Red Sox. Vizcaino (8-2) became the first Yankees pitcher to win twice in a doubleheader since Lindy McDaniel on May 24, 1970, at Cleveland.

New York also completed a trade during the second game, acquiring catcher Jose Molina from the Los Angeles Angels for minor league reliever Jeff Kennard.

Both Duncan and Rodriguez emerged from the dugout for curtain calls after their sixth-inning drives, the first at Yankee Stadium for Duncan and just the latest for Rodriguez.

"I don't think you could really explain it," said Duncan, whose father and brother both reached the majors. "You get goosebumps. It's one of those things where you're kind of frozen. It's your little moment right there for that brief second."

B.J. Upton hit his third homer in two days in the opener and singled in two runs in the second game for Tampa Bay, which has lost 15 of its last 19 road games. Upton went 3-for-9 in the doubleheader and is batting .467 (15-for-32) in nine games since coming off the disabled list.

All-Star left fielder Carl Crawford of the Devil Rays left the first game with a sprained left ankle that he hurt beating out an infield single. X-rays were negative, but he didn't play in the nightcap.

"I don't think it's bad," Crawford said. "It didn't even really swell up. It's just sore."

New York led 7-2 after three innings in the second game but Tampa Bay cut it to 7-5 on Josh Wilson's sacrifice fly in the sixth. The Yankees responded in the bottom half, highlighted by Damon's bloop, two-run double and A-Rod's major league-leading 33rd homer of the season.

Rodriguez also doubled twice and finished with four RBI. He remains on pace to be the fastest player to 500 homers.

J.P. Howell (1-4) gave up seven runs and 10 hits in five innings for Tampa Bay, which recalled him from Triple-A Durham between games.

Duncan had already had a memorable day by the time he entered the nightcap in the eighth. He slapped some heads and pounded forearms with a few teammates after his first homer into the seats in left, leaving several of them chuckling about the 27-year-old's exuberance.

"I tried to warn the guys last night when he got here that if he scored to be careful, and lo and behold I'm the first one that he tried to take out today," said Andy Phillips, who played with Duncan at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and scored when he went deep.


Vizcaino leads major league relievers in wins. ... New York optioned reliever Edwar Ramirez to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre after the opener and promoted Matt DeSalvo, who started the second game. ... New York DH Jason Giambi took batting practice for the first time since hurting his left foot and hopes to rejoin the Yankees by early next month. He took 20 swings in a batting cage at the team's spring training complex in Tampa, Fla., and could start hitting on the field in the next few days. ... Damon also homered in both ends of a twinbill for the Yankees last Aug. 18 at Boston.
Copyright 2017 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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With this swing, Alex Rodriguez sits three homers from 500 for his career.  (AP)
With this swing, Alex Rodriguez sits three homers from 500 for his career. (AP)

Players of the Game
New York

A. Rodriguez
AB 4
R 2
H 3
HR 1
New York

J. Damon
AB 5
R 3
H 2
HR 0

Related Video

Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Akinori Iwamura, 3B5110013 .281
Brendan Harris, SS5000013 .301
B.J. Upton, CF5012020 .341
Carlos Pena, 1B4110001 .287
Delmon Young, RF4020001 .291
Ty Wigginton, DH4010004 .280
Jonny Gomes, LF4230001 .279
Dioner Navarro, C3010112 .185
Josh Wilson, 2B2113111 .257
2B - Delmon Young (23, DeSalvo), Jonny Gomes (11, Bruney)
SF - Josh Wilson (2)
RBI - B.J. Upton 2 (41), Josh Wilson 3 (13)
2-OUT RBI - Josh Wilson 2 (10)
SB - Jonny Gomes (4, 2nd base off DeSalvo/Nieves)
Team LOB - 7
Outfield Assists - B.J. Upton 1
DP - Howell-Harris-Pena
E - Akinori Iwamura (6, Misplayed grounder), Jay Witasick (1, Throwing)
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
J.P. Howell (L,1-4) 51077120 7.36
Jay Witasick 1554101 6.15
Brian Stokes 1555101 7.54
Al Reyes 1000010 3.86
Pitches-Strikes - J.P. Howell 100-58, Jay Witasick 47-31, Brian Stokes 28-18, Al Reyes 7-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - J.P. Howell 7-5, Jay Witasick 3-1, Brian Stokes 2-1, Al Reyes 1-1
Batters Faced - J.P. Howell 25, Jay Witasick 10, Brian Stokes 9, Al Reyes 3
New York Yankees
Johnny Damon, LF5324111 .236
Derek Jeter, SS5120001 .332
    Miguel Cairo, PR-SS1100010 .255
Bobby Abreu, RF4323101 .268
Alex Rodriguez, 3B4234000 .311
    Shelley Duncan, 1B0000000 .250
Hideki Matsui, DH4113102 .280
Andy Phillips, 1B-3B5020011 .313
Robinson Cano, 2B5131002 .285
Melky Cabrera, CF5330003 .280
Wil Nieves, C3222000 .164
2B - Johnny Damon 2 (12, Witasick, Stokes), Bobby Abreu (20, Howell), Alex Rodriguez 2 (25, Howell, Howell), Melky Cabrera (10, Howell), Wil Nieves 2 (4, Howell, Stokes)
HR - Alex Rodriguez (33, Witasick), Hideki Matsui (16, Stokes)
SF - Alex Rodriguez (6)
SH - Wil Nieves 2 (3)
RBI - Johnny Damon 4 (32), Bobby Abreu 3 (54), Alex Rodriguez 4 (96), Hideki Matsui 3 (61), Robinson Cano (47), Wil Nieves 2 (8)
2-OUT RBI - Robinson Cano (14), Wil Nieves 2 (3)
SB - Johnny Damon (17, 2nd base off Howell/Navarro)
Team LOB - 6
DP - Cairo-Cano-Duncan
PB - Wil Nieves (1)
E - Wil Nieves (2, Missed catch of throw)
New York Yankees
Matt DeSalvo 4.2744240 6.18
Brian Bruney 0.2211000 3.32
Mike Myers (H,4) 0.1000010 2.57
Luis Vizcaino (H,5; W,8-2) 1.1000000 4.24
Ron Villone 2200010 3.42
WP - Brian Bruney (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Matt DeSalvo 97-60, Brian Bruney 10-8, Mike Myers 5-3, Luis Vizcaino 14-7, Ron Villone 23-16
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt DeSalvo 2-8, Luis Vizcaino 2-2, Ron Villone 2-2
Batters Faced - Matt DeSalvo 23, Brian Bruney 4, Mike Myers 1, Luis Vizcaino 4, Ron Villone 7
Game Information
Attendance - 52983
Game Time - 3:31
Temperature - 80
Umpires - Home - Tim Welke, First Base - Wally Bell, Second Base - Scott Barry, Third Base - John Hirschbeck