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Yankees 11, Rays 5: Winning the wrong way with five home runs

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Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

After several shaky appearances, CC Sabathia finally gave the Yankees a decent start to work with. He gave them six innings of four-run ball on six hits and two walks while striking out nine, but it ended up being the Yankee bats that secured the win over the Rays Monday night. It turned out to be quite the homer parade.

Things got underway in a hurry as Alex Rodriguez hit home run no. 662 in the first inning to put the Yankees ahead from the beginning. CC started off slow as he walked two and allowed a run on a Logan Forsythe double. Another run would have scored, but Brett Gardner was able to throw Steven Souza Jr. out at the plate to keep game tied.

The Yankees broke things open (the first time) in the fourth inning when a potentially rejuvenated Carlos Beltran and Mark Teixeira both singled, and Chase Headley hit a three-run home run to make it a 4–1 game. In the fifth, Beltran hit a home run of his own–his second of the season! They broke open the game (the second time) in the sixth when Stephen Drew doubled, Didi Gregorius walked, and Brett Gardner hit another three-run homer, pushing it to 8–1. They scored again in the seventh after Mark Teixeira doubled, Brian McCann singled, and Headley hit a sac fly to give the Yankees a total of nine runs.

Sabathia was impressive through six, but he struggled in his last inning of work when he allowed back-to-back home runs to Logan Forsythe and Joey Butler. Asdrubal Cabrera doubled and eventually scored on a sac fly before CC was able to get out of the inning to end his night. David Carpenter came in for the eighth and hit a batter. He ended up throwing a ball away on a pickoff attempt and the runner moved up to second. Logan Forsythe singled to hurt the Yankees, yet again, and the Rays were able to add a fifth run before Chris Young could make a running catch to end the inning. It's no wonder we haven't seen much of Carpenter so far this year.

For good measure, the Yankees scored more in the ninth inning. Alex Rodriguez was hit by a pitch and immediately stole second base. It was a cool little thing to see, but it ultimately didn't matter as Mark Teixeira hit the team's fifth home run of the night to make it 11–5. Tex ended the night with four hits and two RBI, while Beltran, Headley, and Rodriguez all had two hits of their own.

In case you were hoping for an idiotic Tropicana Field moment, the stadium gave you what you wanted in the ninth. Branden Pinder came in to close out the game, collected a strikeout, and seemed to have everything taken care of. On the last at-bat, Tim Beckham hit what appeared to be a long drive to left field, but as Gardner was lining up to make the catch on the warning track, the ball hit one of the catwalks overlooking the stadium and fell toward the infield instead. Didi Gregorius made the catch off-camera and the game was over, much to everyone's confusion. Apparently it isn't a game at Tropicana until something stupid happens.