Mark Teixeira’s line drive grand slam set the tone as a Brett Gardner two-run single in the sixth put the Yankees ahead for good on their way to a 7-4 victory Monday.
Andy Pettitte returned from a DL stint without his usual command and lasted just four and two thirds innings, allowing four runs on seven hits. He left with a no decision in the fifth before Shawn Kelley was able to come in and strand two runners to escape the inning.
Teixeira’s grand slam in the third was his first home run of the season, a shot that no doubt boosted the confidence of a player who was severely struggling since returning from the DL. The Yankees have struggled to score runs recently and seemed to be in good position staked to a 4-1 lead.
However Pettitte was wild and a misplayed by David Adams that was ruled a double in the fifth tied the score up at four. In the sixth inning however with men on second and third and two outs, Gardner laced a singled up the middle that scored Ichiro Suzuki and Austin Romine. Indians’ starter Justin Masterson cut off Michael Bourn’s throw that looked like it was going to reach home plate in time to get Romine out.
Masterson lasted until the seventh inning when a solo home run by Travis Hafner finally knocked him out of the game. Mariano Rivera came on for his 20th save of the year, retiring Nick Swisher on a fly ball to end the game. Swisher, in his first game back at Yankee Stadium since signing with Cleveland, received a roll call from the Bleature Creatures in the bottom of the first inning and a standing ovation during his first at bat.
The Yankees and Indians play at 7 pm on Tuesday as David Phelps takes the mound for the Yankees against Scott Kazmir.