Rodriguez moves into 15th place on career HR list as Yankees win

NEW YORK (AP) -- The last time the New York Yankees scored this many runs against the Red Sox at Yankee Stadium, Mickey Mantle homered for New York and Ted Williams went deep for Boston.

Fifty-four years later, the Yankees and Red Sox played another game that had numbers on the scoreboard spinning by as fast as symbols on a slot machine.

Long after Alex Rodriguez hit his 522nd home run to pass Williams and Willie McCovey for 15th place on the career list, Melky Cabrera's tiebreaking groundout in a four-run fifth inning helped New York outlast Boston 15-9 Wednesday night in a glacially paced game that took 4 hours, 8 minutes.

LaTroy Hawkins (1-0) combined with Billy Traber and Brian Bruney for four innings of scoreless relief. Bruney got his first save since 2005 as the Yankees' bullpen bailed out starter Chien-Ming Wang.

"I got the win?" a surprised Hawkins said. "It's cool. It's very nice."

The 15 runs were the most by New York against Boston in the Bronx since winning 17-9 on July 7, 1954, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. The 24 runs combined were the most in a Red Sox-Yankees game at Yankee Stadium since New York's 14-10 win on April 21, 1956.

Wang matched his career high with eight runs allowed, which he set last Aug. 8 at Toronto and tied in the opener of last year's playoff series against Cleveland. Boston's Clay Buchholz was no better, giving up seven runs and eight hits in 3 2/3 innings.

The Yankees, who outhit the Red Sox 16-14, took a 7-3 lead by scoring four runs in a bottom of the fourth that lasted 23 minutes. Then the Red Sox scored six runs in a top of the fifth that stretched for 31 minutes.

New York went ahead for good 11-9 in the fifth, when Jorge Posada hit an RBI double against Julian Tavarez (0-1) and scored the tying run on Robinson Cano's single. A walk to Chad Moeller loaded the bases for Cabrera, whose grounder led to two runs -- the second scored when Moeller slid to the outfield side of second base and into shortstop Julio Lugo, whose throw to first trying for an inning-ending double play went wide for an error.

"I tried to get in there pretty good," Moeller said. "I'm normally not quick enough to get there and actually get them, but when I get the chance, I do. That part is fun."

Moeller, starting at catcher because of injuries to Posada and Jose Molina, had his first three-hit game since July 22, 2004. Every starter had a hit as New York stretched a winning streak to three for the first time this year and stopped Boston's winning streak at four.

"Last year we were remarkably consistent," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "This year we're winning games, but they were hard games to win."

Posada and Jason Giambi finally put away the game with two-run doubles in the eighth off Mike Timlin.

Manny Ramirez, a .536 hitter against Wang (15-for-28), drove in the first run with an RBI double in the first, but Bobby Abreu hit a two-run homer in the bottom half and A-Rod went deep three pitches later for his fourth home run of the season.

"It's very humbling," Rodriguez said.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi spoke more expansively of A-Rod's feats.

"We're going to see this for a while now, him passing a lot of people," Girardi said. "It's really nice having him."

Lugo's run-scoring grounder in the second and Sean Casey's RBI single in the fourth tied it 3-all, but the Yankees chased Buchholz in the bottom half on Moeller's broken-bat RBI double and Derek Jeter's two-run single. Tavarez threw a run-scoring wild pitch that made it 7-3.

That lead evaporated quickly in the fifth. David Ortiz had an RBI single and J.D. Drew chased Wang with a two-run single. Ross Ohlendorf relieved and gave up a tying single to Casey and Dustin Pedroia's two-run single, which put the Red Sox ahead 9-7.

"We made that a game twice, but we just couldn't get the outs to end their big innings," Boston catcher Jason Varitek said.

Game notes
Kevin Youkilis bruised his left big toe when he fouled a ball off it. He left in the eighth inning, and X-rays were negative. ... Ramirez had three hits but also had words with plate umpire Tim McClelland, who called him out on strikes in the third after Ramirez had taken four steps toward first base on a 3-2 pitch. ... NASA astronaut Garrett Reisman threw out the ceremonial first pitch -- in a video from the International Space Station. ... NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital became the Yankees' official hospital as part of a sponsorship deal. ... Bucky Dent, of 1978 tiebreaker playoff fame, counted down the board of regular-season games remaining at Yankee Stadium.