CINCINNATI (AP) – Teammates forced Chris Heisey to take a curtain call after the third homer. The capacity crowd chanted his name in unison.
Finally, some runs. And a young leadoff hitter had provided most of them.
Heisey got Cincinnati’s slumping offense going with his first multihomer game, and Johnny Cueto allowed only two hits in seven innings Wednesday night, leading the Reds to a 10-2 win and a doubleheader split with the New York Yankees.
In the opener, Jorge Posada ended the second-longest homer drought of his career with a two-run shot, sending the Yankees to a 4-2 win.
Heisey started the second game with his first career leadoff homer. He also had two-run shots off Brian Gordon (0-1) and Hector Noesi. After his homer in the eighth, Heisey was forced to take a curtain call and heard his name ring through the ballpark.
“That was a good night,” manager Dusty Baker said. “That might get our offense rolling.”
Heisey became the third Reds player to homer three times in the leadoff spot, joining Pete Rose and Jay Bruce.
“When you get a hit in your first at-bat, it takes the pressure off the rest of your day,” Heisey said. “It relaxes you. Nobody likes to go 0 for 4 or 0 for 5. One home run’s a good dnded his stretch of 126 at-bats without one. His last homer was April 23.
It’s not like he was counting the days.
“I don’t know when’s the last time I hit one, but I wasn’t trying to hit one,” Posada said. “They happen for me. I don’t care when they do happen. I’m happy they are, but I’m not going out trying to hit a home run.”
Posada had been through a lot since his last homer, losing his DH job, getting dropped to ninth in the order and having to apologize for taking a day off.
Freddy Garcia (6-6) gave up two unearned runs in seven innings. Yankees third baseman Ramiro Pena committed three errors, including two in the fifth inning that gave the Reds two unearned runs.
Garcia allowed three hits in seven innings while improving to 22-10 in 39 career interleague starts. The right-hander is 4-0 in four career starts against the Reds, all of them in Cincinnati and all of them for a different team. He played for the Mariners, the White Sox and the Phillies in the first three.
Mariano Rivera pitched the ninth for his 19th save in 22 tries. He has a record 66 career saves in interleague games, including 22 straight since 2006.
Notes: Yankees SS Derek Jeter (strained calf) threw for the second straight day at New York’s spring training complex in Tampa. … New York INF Eric Chavez (broken left foot) could run the bases in the next couple days. He’s taking batting practice and fielding in Tampa. … Posada’s longest homerless stretch was 140 at-bats in 2002-03, according to research by the Elias Sports Bureau for the Yankees. … RHP Jeff Marquez went on the DL between games with a sore shoulder. RHP Buddy Carlyle was called up by New York. … The Reds activated RHP reliever Sam LeCure off 15-day DL and optioned LHP starter Travis Wood to Triple-A Louisville.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)