Heathcott, Yankees stun Rays in 9th to close gap in East

Alex Rodriguez delivered a game-tying, two-out double and Slade Heathcott launched a three-run homer off Brad Boxberger as the Yankees rallied for four ninth-inning runs and stunned the Rays, 4-1, on Monday at Tropicana Field. MORE

Clubhouse report

New York Yankees' Slade Heathcott, center, celebrates his three-run home run off Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Brad Boxberger with Chris Young, left, and Brian McCann, right, during the ninth inning of a baseball game Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Heathcott fires up Yanks with huge home run

“Cloud Nine. Just awesome,” Heathcott said. “I got a good pitch to hit and put a pretty good barrel on it. I don’t think there was much of anyone left in the dugout, so that’s awesome.”

Throwback CC start has Yanks encouraged

“To me, maybe the most encouraging part of the whole night,” A-Rod said. “CC threw the ball as well as he’s thrown it all year. Four pitches for strikes, and it’s not just about speed, it’s throwing the ball with conviction. Tremendous performance by CC. Very encouraging.”

Playoff picture

The Yankees closed within three games of the idle Blue Jays in the American League East race. Toronto opens a series tonight with the Braves at Turner Field. The Yankees lead the Rangers by three games for the first Wild Card.

Stat so?

The 6 2/3 innings marked Sabathia’s first scoreless start since April 7, 2013, at Detroit, with 63 starts in between.

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Parting words

“That’s probably the most excited we’ve been all year. Every game from here on out is important. We were getting shut down for eight innings, and came through there in the ninth, all with two outs. Alex obviously with a big hit, couple of guys get on base, and Slade goes oppo. He’s a strong kid, and he’s fresh, he hasn’t been playing much. Put a great swing on it against a real good pitcher, and we came through.” — Brett Gardner


I feel Heathcott’s blast refutes Joe’s thinking that the kids do not “know” the MLB pitchers. Maybe now Refsnyder will get a start against a LHP over Ryan like we all want!


I do not know the name of the umpire calling balls, and strikes, but he’
s from outer space! I saw several pitches from both sides that were obvious strikes, and he called them balls. I felt bad for CC; I don’t know how he kept his composure!


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