Feldman, Texas bullpen shut down Yankees

6-30-08 -- The only other time Scott Feldman pitched at Yankee Stadium, he stunk up the joint and left with an 81.00 ERA.

He returned Monday night and once again something didn’t smell quite right. This time, though, he wasn’t to blame.

Feldman and a reshuffled Texas bullpen shut down the New York Yankees on four hits, leading the Rangers to a 2-1 victory.

Pulled in the sixth inning, Feldman walked up the dugout tunnel and then tiptoed to the clubhouse—a sewer line had sprung an early leak and the hallway was flooded. The grounds crew worked most of the game to prevent further damage.

“It was like they had a Zamboni out there,” Feldman said. “I was like, ‘What in the world is this?”’

Feldman (2-3) earned his first career road victory. It was far better than his previous appearance in the Bronx, a 14-13 loss for Texas in 2006 in which he gave up three runs while getting just one out in relief.

Despite losing reliever Eddie Guardado to an inflamed left shoulder while he was warming up to pitch the eighth inning, Texas held on.

Rangers relievers threw 3 1-3 perfect innings, never letting a ball out of the infield. C.J. Wilson closed for his 18th save in 20 chances.

“When you get some pitching, there’s quite a few things that can happen for you,” Texas manager Ron Washington said. “It worked out well.”

The win moved Texas to 43-41—that may seem to be a modest achievement, but it marked the first time since Sept. 22, 2006, the Rangers have been two games over .500.

Josh Hamilton looped an RBI single and recently promoted rookie Chris Davis delivered another key hit for Texas off Mike Mussina (10-6).

“It’s not frustrating. I had good stuff today and so did their guy,” Mussina said.

Alex Rodriguez hit his 534th home run for the Yankees, tying Jimmie Foxx for 14th place on the career list.

“Alex is going to catch a lot of pretty famous people in the coming years,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said.

Feldman won for the first time in nine starts, pitching 5 2-3 effective innings and giving up a home run, triple, double and single. He worked around those four hits and three walks and left with a 2-1 lead.

Frank Francisco and Jamey Wright also worked in relief for Texas, which won for the fourth time in its last 22 meetings with New York, and handed the Yankees a disappointing start to their nine-game homestand.

Texas led by a run when Guardado trotted in from the bullpen and started to warm up. He quickly stopped, rubbed his left shoulder and, with the Texas trainer looking on, left the game. He was listed as day-to-day.

“He felt a twinge,” Washington said.

Rodriguez hit his 16th homer of the season, a solo shot that sailed deep toward Monument Park in the fourth.

Jason Giambi made a bid to tie it in the sixth and wound up with his first triple since 2002. His drive to right eluded Hamilton, who went hurtling into the padded wall, and finished Feldman.

Francisco relieved and struck out Jorge Posada to keep it 2-1.

Texas took a 1-0 lead in the third when Ian Kinsler doubled and Hamilton singled for his major league-leading 80th RBI.

David Murphy drew a leadoff walk in the fourth and scored on a double by Davis. Previously picked to play in the Futures all-star game at Yankee Stadium in two weeks, Davis homered in his first two major league starts after getting called up last week.

Michael Young doubled twice and singled for Texas.

Notes

Hamilton’s 80 RBIs are the most by the end of June since Carlos Delgado had 89 in 2003, the Elias Sports Bureau said. … Milton Bradley struck out four times. He hollered while walking away from the plate after umpire Dan Iassogna called him out in the fifth, and Washington came onto the field to prevent any escalation. The next time up, Bradley accidentally threw the bat twice on swings. … Yankees LF Brett Gardner was promoted from Triple-A and made his major league debut. Known for his speed and hustle, he batted leadoff and stole second base despite a pitchout. He went 0-for-3. “It was exciting, although I wasn’t near as nervous as I thought I would be,” he said. … Rangers C Jarrod Saltalamacchia made a strong throw from his knees to catch Bobby Abreu trying to steal second. … Giambi’s ninth career triple came in his 6,101st at-bat.


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