NEW YORK (AP) Alfonso Soriano homered twice for the second straight night and drove in a career-high seven runs, giving him a staggering 13 RBIs in two games while powering the suddenly potent New York Yankees to an 11-3 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday.
Soriano hit an early grand slam and became the third player to knock in at least six runs in back-to-back games since RBIs became an official statistic in 1920, according to STATS. The others were Texas’ Rusty Greer in August 1997 and Milwaukee’s Geoff Jenkins in April 2001.
Robinson Cano went 4 for 4 to pass Hall of Famer Phil Rizzuto for 15th place on the franchise hits list, and the Yankees hammered Angels ace Jered Weaver (7-6) in opening an 8-0 cushion by the second inning for Ivan Nova (6-4).
Still looking to make a push in the crowded AL playoff chase, New York won its fourth in a row and will go for a four-game sweep Thursday afternoon.
Soriano hit his fifth career slam in the first and a two-run double with the bases loaded in the second. He homered again leading off the fifth and acknowledged the crowd of 38,379 chanting his name by lifting his glove when he went back out to left field in the sixth.
With a chance to do even more damage, Soriano walked with a runner on second in the seventh. He scored for the third time on Chris Stewart’s two-run single.
After spending the early part of his career in New York from 1999-2003, Soriano was reacquired from the Chicago Cubs on July 26 to give the injury-depleted lineup a boost. He got off to a slow start upon returning to the Yankees but has certainly turned it on lately. He set a career best with six RBIs – all in a three-inning span – during New York’s 14-7 win Tuesday night and then quickly broke the mark one night later.
Soriano became the seventh player since 1920 with at least 13 RBIs over consecutive games and the first since Cubs slugger Sammy Sosa had 14 in August 2002, STATS said. The record is 15 by Yankees second baseman Tony Lazzeri in May 1936.
Nova, who has been outstanding since rejoining the rotation on July 5, worked around 10 hits in 7 1-3 innings. He’s been hurt by a lack of run support recently, but that was no problem this time.
Weaver’s dud came out of nowhere. The right-hander was 6-1 with a 1.72 ERA in his last nine starts and had won four straight decisions.
This time, he gave up nine runs, matching a career high, and nine hits over five innings as Los Angeles lost its fourth in a row. The reeling Angels have dropped eight of 10 and 14 of 19 overall.
NOTES: Mike Trout has reached base safely in 36 straight games, the longest current streak in the majors. … Angels LHP C.J. Wilson (12-6, 3.49 ERA) faces RHP Phil Hughes (4-11, 4.99) on Thursday. Wilson, who beat the Yankees 5-2 at home on June 14, is 8-1 with a 2.89 ERA in his last 11 starts. … Angels CF Peter Bourjos (broken right wrist), on a rehab assignment at Triple-A Salt Lake, will likely be activated Friday, manager Mike Scioscia said. … 2B Howie Kendrick (hyperextended left knee) was scheduled to take batting practice. … SS Erick Aybar sat out after leaving Tuesday night’s game with cramping in his left calf. He had started 80 consecutive games at shortstop. Andrew Romine filled in after getting recalled from Salt Lake. LHP Nick Maronde was optioned to Double-A Arkansas. … New York SS Derek Jeter (strained right calf) took batting practice on the field and will head to the team’s complex in Tampa, Fla., when the Yankees go to Boston for a series that begins Friday. … DH Travis Hafner (strained right rotator cuff) said he expects to be sidelined until at least September. … Cano has 1,590 hits.