Soriano strikes again as Yanks whip Red Sox in series opener

The Yankees' new-look batting order has provided a spark, and no one has been more catalytic than Alfonso Soriano.

Soriano went 3-for-4, crushed another homer and drove in four runs as New York took down the Boston Red Sox, 10-3, in the first of three games between the AL East rivals at Fenway Park.

Over the last four games, Soriano has gone deep five times and driven in a remarkable 18 runs, tying the MLB record for the most RBI in a four-game span.

"You're looking at a powerful right-handed hitter in the middle of the lineup who caught fire since he came over," Red Sox manager John Farrell said.

Mark Reynolds belted a two-run shot in his first at-bat as a Yankee and Andy Pettitte spun 6 2/3 stellar innings in the win, New York's fifth in its last six games. Pettitte (8-9) allowed three unearned runs on six hits and a walk.

"It was a big win for us. We've got to win this series. We've got to win a lot of series," Pettitte said.

The Red Sox still sit atop the division, but have dropped a season-high tying three straight games and six of their last eight overall.

Felix Doubront (8-6) was knocked out after a forgettable four-inning start that saw him surrender seven runs -- six earned -- on eight hits.

Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez went 2-for-4 with a walk and a run scored on a day when reports claimed members of the embattled slugger's camp implicated other players in the Biogenesis scandal.

That controversy took a back seat when Friday's first pitch was thrown and the Yankees continued their recent surge behind a 15-hit barrage.

Brett Gardner led off the game with a base hit, advanced on a bunt, stole third without a throw and scored on an infield single by Soriano.

Small-ball morphed into long-ball in the next two frames.

Reynolds, who was released by the Indians earlier this week and quickly picked up by the power-hungry Yankees, fouled off a pair of 0-2 fastballs in the second inning before turning on a changeup and narrowly clearing the Green Monster for a two-run homer.

Soriano came up in the third with two on -- one thanks to an error by Stephen Drew -- and clubbed a no-doubter to left-center for yet another round-tripper.

Robinson Cano extended his hitting streak to 11 games with an RBI single in the fourth inning to make it a 7-0 game.

Jonny Gomes singled in Dustin Pedroia in the bottom half to get Boston on the board, but Pettitte picked off Gomes at first and set down the side in order in the fifth and sixth innings.

The Red Sox added two in the seventh, though they ran themselves out of a bigger inning when Soriano threw out David Ortiz at second trying to stretch an RBI single into a double. Drew later doubled and scored on Jarrod Saltalamacchia's base hit to center, signaling the end of Pettitte's night.

Shawn Kelley came in from the bullpen and appeared to hit pinch-hitter Mike Carp on the foot, which would have loaded the bases, but after a meeting with his fellow umpires, Bill Welke ruled the pitch a ball. Carp eventually struck out to end the inning and was quickly thrown out by Welke for arguing.

The Yankees poured it on in the ninth with three runs off Drake Britton courtesy of two-out, RBI singles from Ichiro Suzuki, Reynolds and Chris Stewart.

Game Notes

Soriano joined Joe DiMaggio, Lou Gehrig, Jim Bottomley, Tony Lazzeri and Sammy Sosa as the only players with 18 RBI over four games ... Gardner, Reynolds, Stewart and Eduardo Nunez each had two hits for the Yankees ... Boston is the only team this season that has not endured a losing streak longer than three games ... The Yankees began a string of 16 straight games against AL East teams on Friday ... Pettitte, who was winless in his previous five starts, improved to 20-11 lifetime against the Red Sox ... Doubront came in 3-1 against New York with a 2.36 ERA ... Boston still leads the season series, 6-4.