Nick Swisher and Robinson Cano hit consecutive homers to build an early cushion, CC Sabathia made the lead stand up and the New York Yankees avoided elimination, beating the Texas Rangers 7-2 Wednesday and closing within 3-2 in the AL championship series.
Sabathia bounced back from an erratic opener, staying away from too much trouble against Josh Hamilton and Texas’ big bats. Rangers slugger Nelson Cruz made an early exit with hamstring trouble, a day after Yankees star Mark Teixeira was lost for the postseason with a hamstring injury.
Now the teams will return to Texas to decide the best-of-seven series. When they resume Friday night, Phil Hughes starts for the defending World Series champion Yankees against Colby Lewis in a rematch of Game 2, won by Texas 7-2.