NEW YORK (AP) — Nick Swisher and Robinson Cano hit consecutive home runs to back CC Sabathia, and the New York Yankees took advantage of a couple of rare Texas miscues for a 5-0 lead after three innings Wednesday in Game 5 of the American League championship series.
Facing a 3-1 deficit in the best-of-seven series, the Yankees showed some spark at the plate against C.J. Wilson.
Jorge Posada and Curtis Granderson had back-to-back RBI singles in the second inning after Wilson walked two. Granderson’s hit to right field set off a series of bad throws that led to two more runs on the play and left Derek Jeter smiling in the New York dugout.
Swisher led off the third with a long drive to left. Cano, batting in the No. 3 spot in place of injured slugger Mark Teixeira, followed with his fourth homer of the series, giving New York a 5-0 lead.
Pitching on regular rest for the first time this postseason, Sabathia struck out three and gave up four singles.
Elvis Andrus singled leading off the afternoon and has at least a hit in all 10 postseason games. But Ian Kinsler bounced into a double play. In the third, Andrus hit a dribbler that stopped on the third-base line. He advanced to third on a groundout and a stolen base before Sabathia got Josh Hamilton to line out to Jeter at shortstop.
Wilson held the Yankees scoreless over the first six innings in his Game 1 matchup against Sabathia before Cano connected in the seventh and started the Yankees’ big comeback for their lone win in the series.
Texas had outscored New York 18-3 in the first two games at Yankee Stadium. The Yankees have not lost three straight home games in a single series in the postseason since the 1942 World Series.
After Alex Rodriguez and Lance Berkman walked in the second, Posada singled in A-Rod for a 1-0 lead. Granderson then hit a liner to right field that scored Berkman and Jeff Francoeur tried to nail Posada advancing to third but his strong throw bounced passed third baseman Michael Young for an error. Wilson raced over to pick up the ball in front of the Rangers’ dugout and his throw sailed over catcher Matt Treanor’s head and Posada touched home safely for a 3-0 lead.
Sabathia gave up five runs and six hits over four innings in Game 1 of the ALCS, pitching after an eight-day layoff.