SEATTLE (AP) -- Jason Giambi's bat has come alive again.
Giambi hit two homers and drove in four runs as the New York
Yankees rallied from a four-run deficit and beat the Seattle
Mariners 7-4 Monday night for their fifth straight win.
In his last two games, Giambi has four homers and 11 RBI. In
his 19 previous games, Giambi had no homers and four RBI.
Last Thursday, he had a cortisone shot in his left elbow.
"The shot has helped me a lot," Giambi said. "I had
Mike Mussina had his second straight poor outing, failing to
complete the fifth inning in consecutive starts for the first time
since Sept. 12 and 19, 1996, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
But behind Giambi's power, the Yankees won after trailing by
four runs for the second time in three games, the eighth time this
"We don't get worried when we're behind," Giambi said. "We
know we're only a few walks and a few swings from being back in the
Starting a seven-game trip following a 6-1 homestand, New York
remained 1˝ games behind AL East-leading Boston and opened a
one-game lead in the AL wild-card race. The Yankees, a season-high
18 games over .500 at 74-56, have won six of seven this season
against the Mariners, who are last in the AL West.
Giambi said a key to his success has been playing in the field.
He started his 50th game at first base. He was a designated hitter
much of the time early in the year.
"I hate DHing," he said. "I definitely enjoy playing in the
Giambi had a 432-foot homer to right off the Hit It Here Cafe in
the fifth to pull the Yankees to 4-1, and Robinson Cano had an RBI
single later in the inning.
After starter Ryan Franklin walked Gary Sheffield and Alex
Rodriguez with one out in the sixth, Mariners manager Mike Hargrove
brought in left-hander Matt Thornton (0-4) to face Giambi, who
turned on a slider and hit a three-run homer down the right-field
"I have a good fastball and I'm sure he is looking for that,"
Thornton said. "I got beat on my second best pitch, something I
shouldn't have done."
Giambi became the first Yankees player to have consecutive
multihomer games twice in one season, the first major-leaguer since
San Francisco's Barry Bonds on July 30-31 and Aug. 30-31, 1999.
Giambi has 25 homers and 64 RBI, including 21 homers and 47 RBI
since June 14.
Former Mariner Alex Rodriguez hit his league-leading 39th homer
off Julio Mateo in the eighth and Matt Lawton, acquired Saturday
from the Chicago Cubs, added his first homer for the Yankees, a
drive off George Sherrill.
Yankees manager Joe Torre took out Rodriguez, the Yankees' third
baseman, after eight innings because of a tight right groin.
"It's something he's had," Torre said. "He will be in there
Rodriguez limped out of the clubhouse after talking to
"It stiffened up a little bit, but it should be OK tomorrow,"
Aaron Small (5-0), who replaced Mussina with the bases loaded
and nobody out in the fourth, got the win in his fifth relief
appearance of the season, allowing one hit in four scoreless
Mussina, who gave up eight runs in an inning against Toronto
last week, allowed four runs and six hits in three-plus innings,
tying his season high with four walks. He was 1-2 with an 8.17 ERA
in five August starts, leaving his season ERA at 4.34.
"It's almost September and there are times when you feel like
your body is dragging a little bit," the 36-year-old right-hander
said. "This could be one of those times."
Ichiro Suzuki put the Mariners ahead when he homered on the
second pitch of the game. Suzkui has five leadoff homers this
season and 17 in his career. He also has a career-high 14 homers
Mariano Rivera pitched the ninth for his 34th save in 38
Franklin went 5 1/3 innings, giving up four runs, four hits and
four walks in 5 1/3 innings.
"We pitched well for four innings," Seattle manager Mike
Hargrove said. "The sad thing is you have to pitch well for nine
Giambi had his seventh multihomer game of the season and
30th of his career. He had consecutive multihomer games on July
20-21. ... Suzuki's previous high was 13 homers in 2003. The
five-time All-Star has 51 homers in his Mariners' career. ...
Mariners rookie Yuniesky Betancourt got his first major-league
stolen base in his 28 games. ... Bloomquist left the game in the
fourth with a strained left hamstring after running hard to beat
out the throw at first on his RBI grounder. "We won't know until
tomorrow," Hargrove said. "If I were to guess, he pulled a