A’s stave off late rally to overcome Yankees

A’s stave off late rally to overcome Yankees

OAKLAND - Reuters
A’s stave off late rally to overcome Yankees

The Athletics’ Seth Smith leaps up against the wall to take a hit away from the Yankees’ Travis Hafner. AFP photo

A late New York Yankees rally fell just short as the Bronx Bombers threatened to overcome a six-run deficit in the final two innings of their 6-4 defeat to the high-flying Oakland Athletics on June 11.

Coco Crisp homered in the opening inning and Derek Norris drove in four runs to help Oakland charge to a 6-0 lead before the visiting Yankees provided some belated resistance.

After scoring twice in the eighth, Mark Teixeira’s two-run single in the ninth pulled New York within two and brought the tying run to the plate before closer Grant Balfour got the last out.

The loss kept the Yankees (37-27) two games behind first-place Boston in the American League East while the Athletics (39-27) trail Texas by percentage points in the AL West.

In Los Angeles, the Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks exchanged punches in a brawl that led to five ejections as the home team went on to win 5-3.

Arizona’s Ian Kennedy hit Zach Greinke with a pitch in the seventh inning, believed to be in retaliation for the Dodgers starter hitting an opponent earlier, to set off a bench-clearing brawl in which several punches thrown.

Both managers were ejected, along with Dodgers rookie Yasiel Puig and hitting coach Mark McGwire, as well as Arizona’s assistant hitting coach Turner Ward.

In a more sedate affair, Detroit’s Max Scherzer stayed perfect on the season with his ninth win to give the Tigers a 3-2 triumph over Kansas City. Scherzer lasted seven innings en route to tying the Major League lead with nine wins and becoming for the first Tigers pitcher to begin the season 9-0 since Vern Kennedy in 1938.