NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Chris Capuano was watching, hoping for some of that old Bronx mojo with the New York Yankees down a run against the Boston Red Sox in the ninth inning.
And then, boom, Mark Teixeira. Tie game. Boom, Chase Headley.
Just like that, the Yankees stole one to keep the second wild-card spot within reach at four games back.
“I was standing on the top rail there,” Capuano said after Thursday’s 5-4 win, “just hoping for some magic.”
Headley and Teixeira’s solo blasts gave the Yankees a little more belief that they can put together a spurt and return to the playoffs after a one-year absence.
“You expected the magic moment, the big hit, the guy to get out of the jam,” Headley said of watching the Bombers as a kid and competitor. “You just kind of learn to expect it.”
David Ortiz homered twice off Capuano as the Red Sox built a 3-0 lead in the first three innings. After Derek Jeter hit a two-run double and scored on Carlos Beltran’s single in the bottom of the third, Brock Holt put Boston ahead 4-3 with a fifth-inning homer.
Rich Hill, Esmil Rogers, Josh Outman, Shawn Kelley and Adam Warren (3-5) combined for 4 2-3 innings of one-hit relief, keeping the Yankees within one run.
New York had just one hit since the third before Teixeira fouled off a 2-2 pitch, then drove a hanging splitter into the second deck in right field for his 21st home run this season, his first since Aug. 17.
“I’ve been pretty bad the last few weeks,” said Teixeira, who started the game in a 6-for-44 (.136) slide.
After Brian McCann flied out, Headley worked the count to 3-2 and sent another splitter from Uehara (6-5) deep into the right-field bleachers. Headley threw his helmet as he approached home plate, where he was met by his leaping teammates and doused with an orange bucket of Gatorade by Brett Gardner as he crossed.
It was Headley’s second-game winning hit since the Yankees acquired him from San Diego on July 22. On the night he arrived, his 14th-inning single gave New York a 2-1 victory over Texas.
“A little bit different,” Headley said, smiling. “I actually knew everybody’s name this time.”
“Every one is fun,” he added. “There’s not a whole lot of better feelings in sports and in baseball than getting a walk-off hit. Obviously the circumstances that we’re in right now, we’ve got to win every game that we play. That’s our mentality. Big, big win.”
New York, with 24 games left, is in danger of missing consecutive postseasons for the first time since 1992 and ’93.
“It’s a great win, and we needed it,” manager Joe Girardi said. “And we’re going to need a lot more.”
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