The New York Yankees capitalized on a lightning-quick rally in the fifth inning -- scoring four runs in a span of 11 pitches -- en route to a 6-2 victory over the Angels on Sunday, completing a three-game sweep in Yankee Stadium.
The Angels, who extended their losing streak to a season-high five games, had a 2-1 lead on the strength of back-to-back first-inning home runs by Mike Trout (his 16th of the season) and Albert Pujols (his 15th) off Yankees left-hander CC Sabathia.
Then Chris Young opened the bottom of the fifth with a solo homer to left field off Angels starter C.J. Wilson to tie the score, 2-2. Jose Pirela grounded out, but John Ryan Murphy and Didi Gregorius singled, and leadoff man Brett Gardner lined a three-run homer to right for a 5-2 lead.
Pirela led off the seventh with a solo homer off Wilson, who allowed six runs and seven hits in seven innings, striking out eight and walking none.
The Angels rotation has been a strength for most of the season, but starting pitchers have gone 0-4 with a 10.73 earned-run average over the last five games, allowing 29 earned runs in 24 1/3 innings.
Sabathia allowed two runs and five hits in six innings, striking out seven and walking one, to earn the win, but was ejected by home-plate umpire Dan Bellino after Kole Calhoun’s double-play grounder to end the sixth.
Sabathia apparently took exception to Bellino’s strike zone and was ejected before he even crossed the first-base line on the way to the dugout. That sent Yankees Manager Joe Girardi jumping over the dugout railing and onto the field, where he kicked dirt on Bellino in a fiery argument that got him ejected as well.
The afternoon started well for the Angels when Trout and Pujols, who were a combined four for 20 against Sabathia, each homered in the first.
The Angels had a chance to extend the lead to 3-0 in the third when, with runners on first and third and one out, David Freese lifted an apparent sacrifice fly into the right-field corner.
But Trout, who was on first, tagged up and was thrown out at second by right fielder Carlos Beltran, and Bellino ruled correctly that the tag at second occurred before Erick Aybar crossed the plate, negating the run for the Angels.
Sabathia retired the next seven batters, five by strikeouts, and the Angels squandered scoring opportunities in the sixth and seventh innings when they grounded into double plays.