A-Rod slam backs another Pettitte gem

NEW YORK (AP) — Alex Rodriguez hit his second grand slam of the season for home run No. 590 and Andy Pettitte was nearly unhittable again in the daytime, helping the New York Yankees beat the Cleveland Indians 11-2 Monday.

Pettitte pitched seven innings, allowing three singles and Jhonny Peralta's 100th career homer, while striking out five without a walk. He retired his last 14 batters and improved to 6-0 with a 1.12 ERA in six day starts this year.

Both of Rodriguez's slams this season came after Mark Teixeira was intentionally walked ahead of him, and A-Rod is 5 for 5 overall when teams intentionally pitch around Teixeira. Rodriguez's seventh homer of the season leaves him 10 shy off 600 for his career.

The Indians trailed 2-1 in the seventh before shaky relief pitching did them in again.

Cleveland starter Mitch Talbot (6-4) held down the Yankees' lineup, but the Indians couldn't get anything going against Pettitte (7-1), and by the time they came back up again in the top of the eighth, the Indians were seven runs behind.

Manager Manny Acta chose Rafael Perez as his first left-handed reliever to face Curtis Granderson with one out and one on, after frequently reliable Tony Sipp gave up two doubles to the Yankees' center fielder in the series.

Granderson singled, and a wild pitch allowed him and pinch-runner Ramiro Pena take a base, leading to an intentional walk of Teixeira.

Rodriguez worked a 3-1 count before launching a no-doubter to straight away center field off Chris Perez, and, after Rodriguez took a curtain call on a sunny Memorial Day afternoon, Robinson Cano followed with a solo shot. He later added a two-run single that glanced off the heel of first baseman Matt LaPorta.

Rodriguez, who drove in six runs, has 20 grand slams, third in baseball history behind Lou Gehrig (23) and Manny Ramirez (21). He hit an RBI single in the first and added an RBI double in the eighth.

Brett Gardner hit a tiebreaking single in the fourth inning. He had three hits and was thrown out twice trying to steal by Cleveland catcher Lou Marson.

The Yankees scored 15 runs in the seventh innings of their three wins in the four-game series, while the Indians scored seven runs in the seventh inning of their win.

New York had a season-high 18 hits, nine off Cleveland's bullpen.

Mark Grudzielanek's single with one out in the third gave Cleveland its last baserunner until Travis Hafner worked a full-count walk with two outs in the ninth. Peralta followed with a single and Shelley Duncan drove home Hafner with another one off Chan Ho Park.

Talbot finished having allowed three runs on nine hits. He struck out three without a walk, but hit two batters with pitches.

Pettitte tied Clay Buchholz and David Price for the AL lead in wins and improved his career record to 236-136, 100 games over .500.

NOTES: New York Jets coach Rex Ryan was at the game, wearing a Yankees jersey in the TV booth. ... LaPorta hit a pop foul to first on a 3-0 pitch to end the fourth inning. ... Gardner was caught on a pitchout to end the fourth inning. ... Derek Jeter was lifted for Pena in the seventh, with tightness in his left hamstring. He had been hit earlier there by a pitch. ... Indians lefty-batting OF Shin-Soo Choo, hitless in his last 17 at-bats, got his first day off of the year.