Red Sox come back on Yankees, Rivera

Posted: Sunday, April 14, 2002

BOSTON -- Mariano Rivera sat by himself in the dugout and threw his hands in the air. A brief fit of frustration, but an uncommon display for a dominant closer who rarely fails -- and shows emotion even rarer still.

''When you don't do your job with the lead that we had, how can you be happy?'' Rivera said Saturday after Shea Hillenbrand's eighth-inning homer gave the Red Sox a 7-6 victory over New York and sent the Yankees to their fourth consecutive loss.

Rivera was one of the most automatic saves in baseball while helping New York win three straight championships from 1998-2000. But in the ninth inning of Game 7 of last year's World Series, he gave up a run-scoring double to Tony Womack and a blooped single to Luis Gonzalez to blow a 2-1 lead and end the Yankees' reign.

This year, Rivera had four saves in four scoreless appearances.

Until Saturday.

David Wells left with a 6-3 lead after allowing Johnny Damon's double with one out in the eighth. Ramiro Mendoza hit Nomar Garciaparra with a pitch and gave up Manny Ramirez's single to make it 6-4.

Rivera came on and got Tony Clark on a run-scoring groundout. But Hillenbrand followed with his fourth homer of the season, pumping his fist as he left the batter's box and the two-run shot sailed into the screen above the Green Monster.

''Through my experience in the American League, it's not really even a good feeling watching him warm up in the bullpen, much less see him come into the game,'' Red Sox manager Grady Little said.

''It's not the kind of situation you want to come back from too often.''

Yankees manager Joe Torre said Hillenbrand's homer was more of a surprise than Gonzalez's broken-bat blooper that cost the Yankees the title.

''I never want to not be surprised when he gives up a home run,'' Torre said.

Rolando Arrojo (1-0) earned the victory after allowing a run on four hits and two walks in 2 2-3 innings. Ugueth Urbina pitched the ninth for his fifth save, giving up a hit to Jorge Posada with two outs.

Pinch-runner Alfonso Soriano was thrown out trying to steal second to end the game -- the first runner caught stealing by the Red Sox in 14 tries this season.

The Yankees scored four in the first against struggling Boston ace Pedro Martinez before the Red Sox cut the lead to 4-3 against Wells.

Martinez allowed four earned runs on three hits, striking out six while walking three and hitting Jason Giambi twice. It's just the second time the Red Sox have beaten the Yankees in Martinez's last 10 starts against the 26-time World Series champions.

Wells allowed four runs on seven hits, walking two and striking out three. He had real trouble only in the fourth, when Boston strung together four hits and a walk to cut the Yankees' lead to 4-3.

Derek Jeter was batting leadoff for the first time this season, and it didn't take him long to snap an 0-for-9 skid, hitting the first pitch of the game into center for a double.

Indians 8, Royals 7

CLEVELAND -- Pinch-runner Einar Diaz scored on Jason Grimsley's wild pitch with one out in the bottom of the ninth inning Saturday as the Cleveland Indians rallied for their 10th straight win, 8-7 over the Kansas City Royals.

Cleveland scored five runs -- three on Matt Lawton's homer -- to tie it at 7 in the eighth, and then won it in the ninth to improve baseball's best record to 11-1.

The Indians are off to their best start since opening the 1966 season 14-1. Cleveland also had a 10-game winning streak last season from April 28-May 9.

Paul Shuey (1-0) pitched one inning for the win. Cory Bailey (0-2) took the loss.

White Sox 4, Orioles 3

CHICAGO -- Paul Konerko hit a tiebreaking single in the eighth inning after a double error on Baltimore second baseman Melvin Mora as the Chicago White Sox rallied to beat the Orioles.

Konerko's single off Willis Roberts (0-1) snapped an 0-for-16 slump.

Kenny Lofton singled with one out in the eighth and reached second on a wild pitch. Ray Durham hit a grounder to Mora, who was making just his second start at second this season, filling in for the injured Jerry Hairston.

Mora fumbled the ball for the first error and threw low past first baseman David Segui as Lofton scored. Frank Thomas singled and one out later, Konerko singled.

Antonio Osuna (2-0) pitched a scoreless eighth and Keith Foulke the ninth for his fourth save.

Twins 7, Tigers 3

MINNEAPOLIS -- Detroit lost its 10th straight game -- its worst start in 82 years -- as Torii Hunter went 3-for-3 with three RBIs to lead Minnesota.

The Tigers are the lone winless team in the majors and are off to their worst start since going 0-13 in 1920.

Doug Mientkiewicz had three hits and Eric Milton (2-1) bounced back from the worst start of his career to give the Twins their second straight win after getting swept in a four-game series in Cleveland.

Tigers starter Jeff Weaver (0-2) retired 12 of 13 batters after allowing two runs in the first inning. But he couldn't hold a 3-2 lead in the sixth.

Blue Jays 5, Devil Rays 4

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Carlos Delgado hit a two-run homer and doubled as Toronto won its fourth in a row.

The Blue Jays have scored 39 runs during their winning streak. Tampa Bay stranded 13 runners and lost for the sixth time in seven games.

Delgado, who also homered Friday night at Tropicana Field, has four hits and five walks in the first two games of the series.

Winner Luke Prokopec (1-1) earned his first AL victory, giving up one run and seven hits over five innings. Kelvim Escobar worked the final two innings for his second save.

Tanyon Sturtze (0-2) allowed five runs -- three earned -- and six hits in five innings.

Mariners 9, Rangers 4

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Mike Cameron homered twice and Seattle beat Texas for its sixth straight win -- all on the road.

Cameron's two-run homer started a four-run outburst in the sixth that put Seattle ahead to stay. He added a solo shot, his fourth of the season, in the ninth for his sixth career two-homer game.

The Mariners trailed 4-2 with two outs in the sixth before John Olerud singled and Cameron homered to center off Hideki Irabu (0-2). Carlos Guillen, who had three hits, two RBIs and three runs scored, broke the tie with an RBI single.

Seattle has won its first six road games of 2002, after setting an AL record with 59 road wins last season.

Paul Abbott (1-0) gave up four runs and seven hits in five innings.

Athletics 7, Angels 2

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Eric Chavez and Scott Hatteberg each hit two-run homers and Oakland beat Anaheim for the ninth straight time.

Eric Hiljus (1-1) allowed two runs and four hits in 5 2-3 innings and Frank Menechino had a three-run double for the A's, who improved to 8-4 to match their win total from last April.

The Angels have lost six straight overall and have lost 19 of 21 games at Edison Field, dating to last season. Anaheim is 5-30 in its last 35 games in the AL West.



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