A.J. Burnett allowed two hits in seven innings and Nick Swisher homered twice Monday night, leading the New York Yankees to an 11-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.
The AL East leaders improved to 10-1 since the All-Star break, with Burnett (10-4) earning his fifth straight decision.
The switch-hitting Swisher homered from both sides of the plate for the second time this season. Robinson Cano and Johnny Damon also went deep, while Derek Jeter had three hits and Alex Rodriguez contributed a two-run double on his 34th birthday.
Cano had a RBI triple in the second inning, then led off the sixth with his 15th homer off Rays starter James Shields (6-7). Swisher hit his 15th off the right-hander two pitches later and added No. 16 off lefty Brian Shouse with a solo shot in the ninth.
Damon finished New York's 15-hit night with his 200th career homer, a three-run blast that made it 11-3.
Burnett limited the Rays to B.J. Upton's third-inning single until allowing an unearned run in the sixth, when Upton reached base after striking out on an inside pitch that skipped off Jorge Posada's glove for a passed ball.
Upton moved to third on Carl Crawford's single, then scored when Evan Longoria grounded into a double play.
Beginning a stretch in which they'll play 19 of 26 on the road, the Yankees started where they left off on the club's best homestand (9-1) since June 2004. They've won 23 of their last 29, climbing a season-best 23 games over .500.
In addition to maintaining a 2 1/2-game lead in the division over second-place Boston, New York extended its lead to 7 1/2 over the third-place Rays. That matches Tampa Bay's biggest deficit of the season in the standings.
Burnett walked two and struck out five before departing with a 7-1 lead. The Rays scored twice off Jonathan Albaladejo in the eighth before the third New York pitcher, David Robertson, struck out Carlos Pena to escape a jam with two runners on.
Shields hasn't won since beating the New York Mets on June 20, going 0-2 with five no decisions in seven starts since then. He fell to 1-7 lifetime against the Yankees, who have beaten him more than any team.
New York had four of its nine hits off the Rays starter in the second inning, which Hideki Matsui began with a single. Jorge Posada's RBI double drove in the first run of the game, and Cano followed with his triple that struck the wall just out the reach of leaping right fielder Gabe Gross.
Swisher grounded out to second base, driving in Cano to make it 3-0. That was more than enough cushion for Burnett, but the Yankees tacked on some insurance when Cano and Swisher homered in the sixth.
Rodriguez added two more runs with his eighth-inning double off Grant Balfour.
NOTES: Rodriguez was back in the Yankees lineup after resting Sunday. He went 1 for 4 with a walk and exchanged words with plate umpire Brian Knight after taking a called third strike in the fifth inning. ... With OF Brett Gardner on the 15-day disabled list after breaking his left thumb, the Yankees only had three position players available off the bench _ Cody Ransom, Jose Molina and Eric Hinske. ... The Rays activated Shouse (left elbow strain) from the DL and optioned RHP Dale Thayer to Triple-A Durham.