video thumbnail

NYY@TOR: Teixeira extends lead with a two-run homer

TORONTO -- The pitching staff, bookended by Hiroki Kuroda and David Robertson, did its part, while the Yankees' batting order came to life, paced by Mark Teixeira's two-run shot as a part of a four-run third inning that gave New York the boost it needed to edge the American League East-leading Blue Jays, 5-3, on Wednesday night at Rogers Centre.

The win snapped the Yankees' four-game losing streak.

"The whole dugout was excited about those four runs," said Teixeira, who had three RBIs on the night and has homered in three of his last five games. "It had been a while since we had a lead."

New York starter Hiroki Kuroda got the visitors through 6 1/3 innings before the bullpen took over. The right-hander recovered from a leadoff home run by Jose Reyes in the bottom of the first inning -- on the first pitch he threw in the game -- to improve to 5-5 on the season as he allowed three runs on eight hits, with two walks and four strikeouts.

"Looking back at the first inning, I'd seen [Reyes] hit a homer off of Masahiro [Tanaka] the other day, so I should have been more careful with him," Kuroda said through an interpreter. "Obviously they have a good lineup, especially good lefties with power. And the ballpark here is a hitter's ballpark as well, so it's really tough."

David Robertson, who hadn't pitched in a week, showed no signs of rust when called upon to close out the game.

The Yankees' closer entered the game with one out and a two-run lead in the eighth inning and went on to retire five Blue Jays batters for his 18th save of the season and the second-longest of his career apart from a six-out save he threw against the Blue Jays back in 2011.

"To be honest with you, I felt better today than I have in the last few games," said Robertson, who made his 365th appearance for the Yankees, tying Waite Hoyt for 12th place on the Yankees' all-time games-pitched list.

The 29-year-old right-hander fanned Juan Francisco and Colby Rasmus to get out of the eighth before retiring the side in the ninth as the Yankees avoided the sweep heading into an off-day on Thursday.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi had said prior to the game that Robertson would likely see some action, but he was still unsure what his closer would bring after seven days off.

"You worry about a guy being crisp, but he was extremely crisp tonight. His stuff was really good," said Girardi. "It's not easy when you haven't pitched in a week. The good thing is [Robertson] is experienced, and that probably helps in that situation, as opposed to being a young kid."

Kuroda, after allowing the leadoff homer followed by a single to Melky Cabrera, settled in and limited the Blue Jays to three singles until the fifth inning, when he ran into a bit of trouble and gave up a pair of runs on an RBI single from Melky Cabrera. But other than that, the Blue Jays couldn't muster any more offense as four Yankee relievers --including Robertson--steered the ship the rest of the way, allowing only two hits.

MLB.com Comments