The New York Yankees beat the Seattle Mariners by a score of 7-4 on Saturday night.
Sidney Ponson took the hill for the Yankees and went six innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits, walking one, and striking out one.
Australian lefty and reliever-turned-starter Ryan Rowland-Smith started for Seattle. He lasted 6.1 innings, gave up two earned runs on seven hits, walked four, and struck out one.
Bobby Abreu got the Yankees off on the right foot in the top of the first. He smacked a solo homer, his 16th of the season, to put the Yankees up 1-0. With his moon shot, Abreu matched his home run total of 2007.
Rowland-Smith kept the Yankees off the board until the top of the sixth. Jason Giambi smashed a solo homer to right center field, his 29th of the year, and the Yankees went ahead, 2-0.
Ponson seemed to be cruising until the bottom half of the sixth with two out. After giving up a walk and a single to Jeremy Reed and Adrian Beltre, respectively, he coughed up the lead by surrendering a three-run homer to Raul Ibanez, his 23rd on the year, and the Mariners took the lead, 3-2.
Abreu picked his team up and gave the Yankees the lead back in the top half of the seventh. He cracked a two-run triple into the right field corner to score Johnny Damon and Derek Jeter, and the Bombers took the lead back, 4-3.
Later in the inning, the Yankees added three more runs. Giambi hit a ground rule double to score Abreu, Xavier Nady grounded out to third to score Alex Rodriguez, Hideki Matsui singled to score Giambi, and the Yankees took a 7-3 lead.
The Mariners got a run back in the bottom of the eighth. Ibanez hit a bloop single off reliever Joba Chamberlain to score Reed, and the Mariners trailed 7-4.
Mariano Rivera came into the game in relief of Chamberlain and recorded a four out save to give the Yankees a win over Seattle.
Ponson gets the win and improves to 8-5.
Sean Green of the M's lost, and falls to 4-5 on the year.
Rivera notched save number 33 and Justin Thomas of Seattle blew his first save this season.
Abreu fell just a double short of the cycle, as he went 3-4 at the plate tonight with a home run, a triple, a single, three RBI, and two runs scored.
"My wrist has still been bothering me, but my team needs me, and I got a good pitch to hit when I hit the home run. The triple was a hanging slider, and when I hit lefties, I just try to hit it up the middle," Abreu told Kim Jones of the YES Network after the game.
On another note, Jeter went 1-3 tonight with a run scored, and recorded his 2,516th career hit. That moves him only two behind the great Babe Ruth for second place on the all-time Yankees' hits list.
"We felt as we were having some good at-bats tonight, and we were hitting the ball well," said Jeter to the media after the game.
With the win Boston's lost to Texas tonight, the Yankees move back to 7.5 games behind the Red Sox in the Wild Card standings.
This afternoon at 4:10 ET, the Yanks and M's will close out the series in the rubber game.
Mike Mussina (17-7, 3.39 ERA) is scheduled to pitch against Carlos Silva (4-14, 6.53 ERA).
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