Series: Game 1 of 3

Tampa Bay leads 1-0 (as of 9/17)

Game 1: Tuesday, September 17
New York 7Final
Tampa Bay 9
Game 2: Wednesday, September 18
New York 7Final
Tampa Bay 1
Game 3: Thursday, September 19
New York 2Final
in 10
Tampa Bay 3

Yankees 7

(94-56, 44-29 away)

Devil Rays 9

(50-100, 27-49 home)

    7:15 PM ET, September 17, 2002

    Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, Florida 

    123456789 R H E
    NYY 004100200 7 - -
    TB 00103014 - 9 - -

    W: L. Carter (1-0)

    L: R. Mendoza (8-4)

    Rays beat Yankees in Tampa slugfest

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- The Yankees' bullpen finally let one get away.

    Jeter hit by pitch,
    leaves game
    Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter left Tuesday night's game against Tampa Bay with a bruised right wrist after being hit by a pitch.

    Jeter was hit by Paul Wilson in the top of the seventh inning. He stayed in the game to run, but was replaced before the start of the bottom half.

    ''He'll be in there tomorrow,'' manager Joe Torre said after the Yankees were beaten 9-7 by the Devil Rays. ''He's OK. That was just precautionary. He wanted to stay in there. If we're in a different situation, he's staying in.''

    The Yankees' magic number to clinch the AL East championship is four.

    Jeter was examined after the game at the ballpark by team physician Dr. Allen Miller. The injury was treated with ice.

    Wilson is among the AL leaders with 13 hit batters this season. Jeter was the 86th batter hit by Tampa Bay, seven short of the major league set last year by Boston.

    Alfonso Soriano went 5-for-5 with his 39th home run for New York, but John Flaherty hit a tiebreaking double in the eighth inning that lifted the Tampa Bay Devil Rays over the Yankees 9-7 Tuesday night.

    Flaherty's two-out, two-run double off Steve Karsay capped a four-run rally. Carl Crawford had a run-scoring grounder off Ramiro Mendoza (8-4) and Aubrey Huff had an RBI single in the eighth.

    New York's bullpen had converted all 12 save opportunities during closer Mariano Rivera's current stint on the disabled list.

    ''We've been spoiled ... we haven't given any of those away,'' Yankees manager Joe Torre said. ''It felt strange, and I hope it continues to feel strange.''

    Mike Stanton, Mendoza and Karsay gave up five runs and six hits over two innings in relief of Orlando Hernandez.

    ''We let Duque and everybody else down,'' Stanton said. ''That one hurts a little bit. We didn't get the job done.''

    Karsay is 11-for-14 in save situations.

    ''You never cut yourself any slack,'' he said. ''You want to go out there and do the job every time.''

    The Yankees' magic number to capture the AL East title remained at four. Shortstop Derek Jeter left with a bruised right wrist shortly after being hit by Paul Wilson's pitch in the seventh, and was examined after the game.

    ''He'll be in there tomorrow,'' Torre said. ''He's OK. That was just precautionary. If we're in a different situation, he's staying in.''

    Lance Carter (1-0) finished with 2 2-3 scoreless innings for his first major league victory.

    ''I really don't look at it as the Yankees ... it's just another team,'' Carter said. ''They're the best team in baseball, but they go out there and try and hit me and I try to get them out.''

    Alfonso Soriano
    Second Base
    New York Yankees
    144 39 96 122 40 .305

    Randy Winn hit a three-run homer for Tampa Bay, who trailed 4-0 early in the game. Huff went 3-for-5 with two RBI.

    ''You want to go out there and clutch up against the Yankees,'' Huff said. ''You've got so many fans out there rooting for them at your own place, so you really want to shut them up. That felt good.''

    Soriano tied his career high for hits, and homered in his third straight game. He needs one more homer to become the fourth player ever to have 40 homers and 40 steals during the same season.

    ''I feel good because I swung very good, but I'm not happy about the game today,'' Soriano said.

    Soriano also hit his 48th double, most ever by Yankees' right-handed hitter. Bob Meusel had 47 in 1927.

    Orlando Hernandez, pitching to catcher Jorge Posada for the first time since throwing a punch at his teammate in a clubhouse scuffle Saturday, allowed four runs and 10 hits over six innings.

    Even though Posada has long caught Hernandez, they often disagree on what pitches to throw, and frequently get angry at each other in the dugout.

    In the first inning, after Posada threw out Damian Rolls trying to steal second, Hernandez nodded his head and pointed this glove toward the catcher.

    Posada followed Soriano's third-inning homer with a two-run double. Raul Mondesi made it 4-0 on an RBI double.

    Tampa Bay closed to 4-1 in the third on Crawford's RBI grounder.

    The Yankees got the run back the following inning on a run-scoring grounder by Jeter.

    Winn's three-run homer in the fifth closed the Devil Rays to 5-4.

    Bernie Williams hit a two-run triple in the seventh that put the Yankees ahead 7-4. Huff had RBI single in the bottom half.

    Game notes

    Yankees owner George Steinbrenner attended the game. ... Rivera (right shoulder) threw 31 pitches in batting practice and could be activated by the weekend. ... Tampa Bay has hit 86 batters this season, seven short of Boston's major league record set in 2001. ... Jose Canseco (1988), Barry Bonds (1996) and Alex Rodriguez (1998) are baseball's only 40-40 players. ... Williams became the fourth Yankees' player to score 100 runs. The last time the Yankees had four or more players reach 100 in a single season was 1941.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press