NEW YORK -- Nelson Cruz hit a two-run homer in the seventh inning Wednesday, and Adrian Beltre and A.J. Pierzynski had two-run doubles in the fourth as the Rangers outlasted the Yankees 8-5.
Beltre and Pierzynski scored key unearned runs in the ninth inning, on a single by Lance Berkman and a sacrifice fly by Mitch Moreland, as the Rangers won for the sixth time in their past seven games.
Justin Grimm (7-5) allowed three runs in five-plus innings, but entered the sixth with a 4-1 lead. The first two batters reached against him, though, and manager Ron Washington went to the bullpen for left-hander Robbie Ross against a string of three straight left-handed hitters.
The first two, Robinson Cano and Travis Hafner, delivered RBI singles, and the inning ended with the Rangers leading only by one.
Cruz, though, struck with one out in the seventh after Elvis Andrus’ line single to left field. The blast into the Rangers’ bullpen gave Cruz 20 homers for a fifth straight season, tying the club record held by four others.
But the Yankees countered in their half of the inning against Ross with a two-run shot by Ichiro Suzuki, who won the game Tuesday with a solo homer in the ninth inning.
Tanner Scheppers worked a perfect eighth inning before the Rangers got a one-out single by Beltre. Pierzynski followed with a towering drive to left field that bounded off center fielder Brett Gardner for a two-base error.
Berkman came through with a single to right field, over a drawn-in infield, and Pierzynski scooted home on Moreland’s flyball to left field.
-- Jeff Wilson