Notebook: Granderson homers

NEW YORK -- Angels starter Garrett Richards served as the perfect pitcher to help Curtis Granderson's bat finally show some signs of life.

Granderson smacked his third career homer off Richards in the Yankees' 2-1 win over the Angels on Monday night at Yankee Stadium.

Granderson, who went 2-for-3, is now 4-for-6 in his career against Richards, who he tagged for two homers on Aug. 10, 2011.

"He's a good pitcher out there. We were talking about it a minute ago. A guy that averages 95 mph on the fastball, really good curveball. Ball's cutting, ball's running, he's got some good stuff," Granderson said. "Definitely not a guy I want to go up there and continue to face every day. Small sample. We'll see how the next couple of time happen to be."

Granderson has struggled since returning from a fractured left pinkie, as he's batting just .194 in the 10 games since he came back. Monday's homer, a shot to right, marked his second homer and fourth RBI since his return, and his third homer in 18 games in this injury-plagued season.

Monday, he singled in the fifth inning, and added his solo shot in the seventh to give the Yankees a much-needed insurance run as the Angels ended up plating a runner in the ninth. That homer marked his first homer at Yankee Stadium this season, and he now has gone deep in 10 of his last 16 games against the Angels. He boosted his average to .237.

The outfielder said he's still got to work on his timing, and is putting in extra work in the cage with hitting coach Kevin Long to try and make up for all the time he's missed due to the pinkie fracture and a fractured right forearm. He acknowledged he doesn't have much time to work things out, but is trying to ensure he can be an impact bat in the Yankees' lineup.

"The main thing is you can only control what you can and I understand that there aren't that many games left, but I can get out there and hit a little more," Granderson said. "I can get in the batting cage, I can go on the field a little early, home and the road, and that's what Kevin Long and I are continuing to do."

A-ROD 1-FOR-3: Alex Rodriguez, who finished 1-for-3, hit into consecutive double plays. After a single in the second, he was tagged out on a stolen-base attempt.

STEWART OK: X-rays came back negative on catcher Chris Stewart's hand after he was hit with a backswing during Monday's game. The catcher said it hit him in his thumb/knuckle area, but he was fine. Stewart's hand was wrapped up after the game. He went 0-for-3.

NOTES: The Yankees won back-to-back games for the first time since July 11-12. ... David Robertson has retired his last 25 batters with the bases loaded, the longest streak since Jeff Brantley retired 30 from 1989-91, according to Elias. Robertson retired Mark Trumbo and Chris Nelson with the bases loaded on Monday night to close out the game.