NEW YORK Alex Rodriguez did his part to help make New York's final homestand at Yankee Stadium milestone week.
Rodriguez became the first player with 35 home runs and 100 RBIs in 12 seasons one more than Babe Ruth and the New York Yankees slowed the Chicago White Sox's pursuit of the AL Central crown with a 5-1 victory Wednesday night.
"Anytime you can do something like that in a Yankee uniform is special," said Rodriguez, who connected off Scott Linebrink in the eighth.
A day earlier, Derek Jeter set the career hits record at Yankee Stadium, and Mariano Rivera passed Lee Smith for second on the saves list on Monday.
That's about all Yankees fans have had to root for as the club plays out the final week at Yankee Stadium with the likelihood they will be eliminated from the playoffs for the first time since 1993 before Sunday's finale at the House that Ruth Built.
"Obviously you come into each and every season to win a World Series," Rodriguez said. "We have a lot of work to do."
Phil Hughes gave New York something positive to think about heading into the offseason, pitching four solid innings in his first start for the Yankees since April 29.
"Obviously, when a player comes back up he wants to show you what he can do. The big thing is being able to relax, and in the tough situations he made the big pitches," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said.
RAYS 10, RED SOX 3: At St. Petersburg, Fla., Willy Aybar, Gabe Gross and Fernando Perez homered off Tim Wakefield and AL East-leading Tampa Bay beat Boston to move closer to its first playoff berth. Matt Garza gave up two long home runs to David Ortiz, but the Rays otherwise held the Red Sox in check to extend their division lead over them to two games. Tampa Bay can clinch at least a wild-card playoff berth by beating Minnesota twice during a four-game series that begins Thursday at Tropicana Field.
INDIANS 6, TWINS 4: At Cleveland, Cliff Lee was denied his 23rd win and finished with a no-decision against Minnesota the only AL team to beat him and the Indians completed a three-game sweep of the Twins, another gnawing loss for the Central's second-place team. Jhonny Peralta and Victor Martinez hit RBI doubles in the seventh inning off Matt Guerrier as the Indians prevented the Twins from gaining ground on Chicago.
BLUE JAYS 8, ORIOLES 7: At Toronto, Travis Snider drove in the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly in the eighth inning and the Blue Jays rallied to beat Baltimore. Scott Rolen led off the eighth with a double against Kam Mickolio (0-1) and advanced on Curtis Thigpen's sacrifice. Snider followed with a flyball to left to give Toronto an 8-7 lead.
ROYALS 5, MARINERS 2: At Kansas City, Mo., Jose Guillen hit a key two-run single after being sick the night before, helping the Royals to their sixth straight win. Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki was 3-for-3 to reach 200 hits for the eighth consecutive season, matching Willie Keeler's major league record.
TIGERS 17, RANGERS 4: At Arlington, Texas, Freddy Garcia pitched five innings to win in his first game since June 2007 and Detroit scored nine runs in the fifth inning to beat Texas and snap a six-game losing streak. Garcia allowed an unearned run and two hits. He signed a minor league contract last month, more than a year after his season ended for Philadelphia because of an injured shoulder.
A'S 3, ANGELS 2: At Oakland, Calif., the Los Angeles Angels made two throwing errors in the ninth inning, the second by closer Francisco Rodriguez that allowed Oakland's Daric Barton and Jack Hannahan to score the tying and game-winning runs.
BREWERS 6, CUBS 2: At Chicago, Milwaukee overcame the loss of injured starter Ben Sheets and, boosted by Prince Fielder's three-run double, beat the Cubs 6-2. Sheets left after two innings because of tightness in his right forearm. The severity of the All-Star's injury was not immediately known. The Brewers gave interim manager Dale Sveum his first victory and stayed a half-game behind New York in the NL wild-card race.
METS 9, NATIONALS 7: At Washington, Carlos Beltran homered from both sides of the plate, Jose Reyes and Carlos Delgado also went deep, and the New York Mets built a big lead then barely held on to beat Washington. Brandon Knight (1-0), a 32-year-old journeyman back from the Olympics, earned his first major league victory with five solid innings. The Mets had lost four of their previous five games to fall out of first place in the NL East. They remained a half-game behind the division-leading Philadelphia Phillies, who beat Atlanta.
PHILLIES 6, BRAVES 1: At Atlanta, Ryan Howard drove in the first run in Philadelphia's four-run first inning, and rookie J.A. Happ pitched six scoreless innings to help the Phillies earn their season-high sixth straight win. Howard, bidding to win his second NL MVP award in three years, has 29 RBIs in his last 21 games and 137 this season to lead the majors.
PIRATES 15, DODGERS 8: At Pittsburgh, Adam LaRoche hit a grand slam among his two homers and Pittsburgh stalled Los Angeles' late-season surge with an eight-run seventh inning rally. Ryan Doumit, who drove in four runs, hit a go-ahead, two-run homer as nine consecutive batters reached base in the seventh.
MARLINS 14, ASTROS 2: At Miami, Hanley Ramirez homered twice before departing with an injured shoulder, Jorge Cantu hit a grand slam and Florida beat slumping Houston. Hunter Pence homered twice for the Astros, who have lost four straight and fell four games back of NL wild card-leading New York.
REDS 3, CARDINALS 0: At Cincinnati, Aaron Harang pitched a six-hitter and Cincinnati hit back-to-back homers to send the Cardinals to their seventh straight loss Wednesday night.
Andy Phillips and Jay Bruce opened the fourth inning with consecutive home runs and Paul Janish added the first of his career later in the inning to help Harang (5-16) to his first win since Aug. 22.
ROCKIES 1, PADRES 0: At Denver, Joe Koshansky homered and five Colorado pitchers combined for a five-hitter in the Rockies' win over San Diego.DIAMONDBACKS 7, GIANTS 6: At Phoenix, Brandon Webb pitched seven solid innings and added a key two-run double, helping Arizona gain ground in the NL West.
Seattle (Feierabend 1-3) at Kansas City (Greinke 11-10), 12:10 p.m.
L.A. Angels (Saunders 15-7) at Oakland (Outman 1-0), 1:35 p.m.
Chicago White Sox (Vazquez 12-13) at N.Y. Yankees (Mussina 17-9), 5:05 p.m.
Baltimore (Olson 9-8) at Toronto (Litsch 11-8), 5:07 p.m.
Minnesota (Perkins 12-4) at Tampa Bay (Shields 13-8), 5:10 p.m.
L.A. Dodgers (Kershaw 4-5) at Pittsburgh (Maholm 9-8), 10:35 a.m.
Milwaukee (Bush 9-10) at Chicago Cubs (Harden 5-1), 12:20 p.m.
Houston (Arias 1-0) at Florida (Olsen 7-10), 5:10 p.m.
N.Y. Mets (J.Santana 13-7) at Washington (Redding 10-9), 5:10 p.m.
Philadelphia (Hamels 13-9) at Atlanta (Hampton 2-2 or J.Reyes 3-11), 5:10 p.m.
St. Louis (Lohse 13-6) at Cincinnati (Volquez 16-5), 5:10 p.m.
San Francisco (Lincecum 17-3) at Arizona (R.Johnson 10-9), 7:40 p.m.