Sunday, May 23, 2004

Barajas home run wins it for Rangers

American League

The Associated Press

ARLINGTON, Texas - Rod Barajas homered with one out in the ninth inning, capping a late comeback that gave the Texas Rangers a 4-3 victory over the New York Yankees on Saturday.

Barajas, who became the full-time starter Friday when rookie Gerald Laird tore a ligament in his left thumb, smacked an 0-1 breaking ball from Tom Gordon (1-2) high into the left-field seats for his fourth homer of the season. The Rangers came streaming out of their dugout and surrounded the plate, giving him an October-like greeting.

Emotions have been high in Arlington all weekend, partly because of the Yankees but mostly because of the return of Alex Rodriguez. He went 1-for-4 and made an error that helped start Texas' tying rally in the eighth. Carlos Almanzar (4-0) pitched the ninth for the win.

Twins 9, White Sox 1

MINNEAPOLIS - Brad Radke allowed one run in seven innings and Matthew LeCroy hit a two-run homer to lead Minnesota. Justin Morneau went 3-for-3 with his first homer and first two RBI of the season for Minnesota, which had lost the previous three games against Chicago by a combined 29-5 margin. Jose Valentin had two hits for the White Sox, who had their winning streak snapped at four and fell one game behind the first-place Twins in the AL Central.

Athletics 5, Royals 4 (11)

OAKLAND, Calif. - Jermaine Dye made a clutch catch in the top of the 11th inning, then scored on Bobby Crosby's infield single with two outs in the bottom half to give Oakland the victory. Eric Chavez tied it with a two-out, two-run homer in the ninth off new closer Jeremy Affeldt, making his first relief appearance of the year after eight starts.

Zack Greinke nearly beat Barry Zito in his major-league debut, leaving with a 4-2 lead before Affeldt blew it.

Devil Rays 6, Indians 3

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Jose Cruz Jr. homered and drove in four runs, leading Tampa Bay to its first three-game winning streak of the season. Cleveland has lost four in a row. Cruz is 7-for-11 with two homers and eight RBI in the past three games.

Doug Waechter (2-4) snapped a personal four-game losing streak, allowing three runs and four hits in 6 1/3 innings.

Red Sox 5, Blue Jays 2

BOSTON - Manny Ramirez hit a mammoth homer for the second night in a row, helping Boston rally past Toronto.

Anastacio Martinez (1-0) got three outs to win his major-league debut in relief of Pedro Martinez. Keith Foulke worked the ninth for his ninth save of the season and 23rd in a row. Mark Bellhorn's seventh-inning single put Boston ahead, and David Ortiz added an RBI single in the eighth.

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