NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) – The Yankees can’t buy a win right now.
Mired in controversy, the bumbling Bombers dropped one to the Tampa Bay Rays, 6-5, for their sixth loss in a row.
The New York slide includes a three-game sweep by Boston at Yankee Stadium over the weekend that miffed Hank Steinbrenner. It’s the first time the Yankees have lost this many games in a row since a seven-game skid April 20-27, 2007.
“It’s early, but the team needs to get it together,” Steinbrenner said before the game. “We’ve got too much talent to be swept by anybody at Yankee Stadium, even if we’re playing the ’27 Yankees. It’s not acceptable. We need to start doing what I know we can do.”
Yankees starter A.J Burnett sailed through five innings and had a four-run advantage before imploding in the sixth. After Fuld homered and Matt Joyce drove in a run with a single, B.J. Upton ended Burnett’s night with his two-run drive that put Tampa Bay up.
“I heard the Yankees don’t like to play this team and Boston as well,” new Rays reliever Joel Peralta said. “So I’ve heard about it and I see it’s true.”
New York has lost 10 of 13 since May 3.
“This is going to turn around,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “We’re going through a really tough stretch. This is where you’re tested as a team, and you’ve got to fight through it.”
It is the first time the Yankees lost consecutive games in which they had leads of at least three runs since July 10-11, 2009, against the Los Angeles Angels, according to STATS LLC.
“This is a tough one,” New York catcher Russell Martin said. “Good teams know how to get out of it and I think we’re a good team.”
The Yankees have a .237 batting average during the skid, going 10 for 50 with runners in scoring position. They’ve been outscored 39-22 and have a 5.24 ERA.
New York designated hitter Jorge Posada was not in the lineup against Price. The switch-hitting doesn’t have a hit against a left-hander this season, and is 1 for 18 with 10 strikeouts against Price.
Alex Rodriguez was the DH, Posada’s spot for most of the season. A-Rod had his average drop to .242 after going hitless in four at-bats, including three strikeouts.
Posada pulled himself out of the lineup over the weekend, saying he needed a day off, and a public spat ensued between the slumping slugger and club management. Team captain Derek Jeter later said he saw nothing wrong with what his pal did.
Posada has since apologized to the Yankees. The team held a conference call Monday with Jeter, team president Randy Levine, general manager Brian Cashman and managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner.
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