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Jeter Hits Two Home Runs, Yanks Beat Rangers 12-5

(AP Photo/Matt Strasen)

(AP Photo/Matt Strasen)

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ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) Derek Jeter homered twice after going 62 games without a long ball, Curtis Granderson went deep again and the New York Yankees beat the Texas Rangers 12-5 Sunday despite an erratic outing by CC Sabathia.

Jeter had gone 259 at-bats without a homer since last Aug. 24 before leading off the fifth with a liner that barely cleared the eight-foot wall into the Rangers’ bullpen in right-center.

Jeter didn’t wait long for his next homer, leading off the seventh against Arthur Rhodes (1-2) with a deeper shot into the bullpen to break a 4-all tie.

Under scrutiny all season, the 36-year-old Jeter had four hits, three RBIs and his first stolen base of the year while raising his batting average from .256 to .276.

Granderson, who homered twice in Friday’s 4-1 victory, followed Jeter’s second homer with his AL-leading 11th of the season.

Francisco Cervelli hit a grand slam and Mark Teixeira added two-run shot in the eighth, a six-run outburst off rookie Cody Eppley that began with an umpire’s apparent missed call.

Sabathia (3-2) pitched into the seventh with a season-low two strikeouts while matching a season high with four walks, all of those in the first four innings. The big left-hander gave up five runs, three earned, and five hits.

The Yankees, who had lost four of five, overcame an early 4-0 deficit to end a stretch of 16 games in 16 days with a 9-7 record. They have a day off Monday before 16 more games in 16 days.

Texas has won consecutive games only once since its 9-1 start, losing 16 of 25 games and seven of eight series. The Rangers won 7-5 Saturday night, after the Yankees overcame a 5-0 deficit to tie that game.

The Yankees cut their deficit to 4-2 when Jeter and Granderson had consecutive RBI singles in the third off spot starter Dave Bush, who was gone after Jeter’s homer in the fifth.

Granderson greeted rookie reliever Ryan Tucker with a single off the right-field wall and later scored the tying run on a groundout by Alex Rodriguez.

Sabathia walked three of the first eight batters he faced, though Texas got started when leadoff hitter Ian Kinsler reached on a throwing error by Rodriguez. The third baseman made a nice stop near the line, but his throw was well over the head of first baseman Teixeira.

After consecutive one-out walks loaded the bases, Mike Napoli hit a two-run single and David Murphy a sacrifice fly to make it 3-0.

Craig Gentry, called up from Triple-A Round Rock when Nelson Cruz was put on the disabled list Saturday, had a leadoff walk in the second and a stolen base before scoring on a single by Elvis Andrus.

The Yankees led 6-5 when Nick Swisher started the eighth with a grounder to Napoli, and the first baseman slid his foot toward the side of the bag. But first-base umpire Andy Fletcher ruled that Napoli never touched the bag. Napoli threw his hands up in disbelief and manager Ron Washington came out for a heated argument.

Television replays appeared to show that Napoli touched the bag, and before Swisher got there.

Jorge Posada and Brett Gardner followed with singles before Cervelli’s first career slam, and first homer in the majors since June 24, 2009. Teixeira later added his ninth homer of the season.

Rangers catcher Yorvit Torreabla led off the bottom of the eighth with a flyout. He was ejected from the game after he said something to Fletcher on his way back to the dugout after the ball was caught.

NOTES: Bush started in place of Alexi Ogando (3-0), who was skipped to give him time to relieve a blister on his pitching hand that has been a bother all season. … Andrus led off the Texas seventh to chase Sabathia, then had a stolen base, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on Adrian Beltre’s infield chopper when Rodriguez bobbled the ball and then thought about throwing home before going to first late. … The Yankees have won 50 games started by Sabathia since he arrived in 2009. That’s the most in the majors.