New York Yankees
Maybe Curtis Granderson doesn't fancy himself as a home run hitter, but his teammates aren't buying the center fielder's talk.
"He's so full of you know what," right fielder Nick Swisher joked. "He's having such a great year. I couldn't be more happy for him and it couldn't happen to a better guy."
Granderson completed the trifecta of homering in each game of the three-game set against the Angels with a two-run shot Thursday in the Yankees' 6-5 win. It gave Granderson his fourth home run in three games and gave him 32 home runs on the year, extending his career-high.
"Still not (a home run hitter)," Granderson said.
With the Yankees trailing 2-0 in the sixth inning, Granderson swatted a two-run shot to right that tied the game and started the Yankees' comeback. His two runs started a rally of six straight runs scored by the Yankees. He had hit into consecutive double plays in his previous at-bats.
The center fielder has now hit home runs in three straight games for the third time this season and is the now the American League leader in runs with 105 and RBIs with 93. He is tied for the Yankees lead in home runs with Mark Teixeira.
"It's always good to win the series, especially after winning the first one here. Tough team, a team that's looking to go ahead and move themselves up in the American League West, just like we're trying to in the American League East," Granderson said. "Tough battle and it doesn’t get any easier when we have Tampa Bay coming in tomorrow."
THAT GUY BACK-TO-BACK: Rafael Soriano has been lights out in his return from the disabled list, but had yet to pitch in back-to-back games. He finally got his chance Thursday.
After telling Yankees manager Joe Girardi he was good to pitch today, after pitching Wednesday, Girardi used Soriano in the seventh inning and he threw a scoreless frame, ultimately getting the win as the Yankees scored four in the bottom of the inning.
Soriano now has thrown six scoreless innings since his return on July 30 and has given up one hit and struck out five spanning those innings. The single he allowed to Bobby Wilson with one out in the seventh was the first base runner he allowed since his return.
"To me, I feel a lot of confidence right now and I feel very comfortable with the way they're using me and that makes the difference," Soriano said.
HE STARTED? Lost in the heroics of Robinson Cano and Mariano Rivera's struggles was another solid outing by Bartolo Colon. Colon pitched six innings and gave up two runs on a home run by Alberto Callaspo. He recorded a no-decision.
While the Angels threatened at times, Colon did his best to keep them at bay, working out of a bases-loaded jam in the second inning. Colon said he had his sinker working well today and said the home run he served up to Callaspo was his only mistake.
Girardi ultimately pulled Colon after six because the Yankees had a long bottom of the sixth inning as they tied the game and Los Angeles made two pitching changes.
THIS AND THAT: The Yankees are 18-8 in their last 26…They are 25-13 in series finales...The Yankees are 11-4 at this stadium against the Angels...They are 13-2-2 in their last 17 series.