Bronx, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - Brian McCann's solo home run snapped a tie game in the sixth inning and helped the New York Yankees continue their recent roll with a 4-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.
McCann and Brett Gardner each went 2-for-4 with an RBI in the Yankees' sixth triumph in seven tries, which halted a streak of five straight wins the Rays brought into Monday's opener of this three-game set between early AL East leaders.
Stephen Drew chipped in an RBI double, while four New York relievers combined to hold the Rays scoreless over the final 3 1/3 frames. Justin Wilson (1-0) picked up the win with a scoreless inning of work, with Andrew Miller pitching the ninth to nail down his eighth save in as many chances.
Tampa Bay managed just six hits on the night, with Evan Longoria finishing 2- for-4 and Asdrubal Cabrera driving in the team's lone run.
McCann broke a 1-1 deadlock with his first homer in 11 games, a blast into the right-field second deck off Brandon Gomes (0-1) that was followed by Carlos Beltran's double to deep center. Drew greeted reliever Everett Teaford two batters later with a double into the right-field corner that easily scored Beltran and pushed the Yankees' lead to two.
"It was the first time all year, including spring training and when I was down at Triple-A, that I felt I didn't throw the ball well," Gomes said.
New York's bullpen took it from there, with the Rays mustering only two baserunners from the seventh inning on against Wilson, David Carpenter, Dellin Betances and Miller.
"I'll put our guys up against anybody," McCann said. "The stuff that's coming out of the bullpen is incredible."
The game's first four frames contained a duel between Yankees starter Adam Warren and Tampa's Nathan Karns, who set down 14 of the first 16 New York hitters before walking Drew in front of Didi Gregorius' infield single with two out in the bottom of the fifth.
Gomes, summoned in place of Karns after Jacoby Ellsbury worked an eight-pitch walk to load the bases, then issued a free pass to Gardner that forced home the initial run.
The Rays answered by manufacturing a run in the sixth off Warren, who had encountered little trouble after pitching out of a two-on, one-out jam in the opening inning.
After reaching on a leadoff single and moving to third on Warren's wild pitch and a flyout, David DeJesus averted McCann's tag while sneaking his hand on the plate when racing home on Cabrera's bouncer to second.
Warren finished with six strikeouts while yielding just one run over 5 2/3 innings. Karns fanned five and allowed one run on three hits through 4 2/3 frames.
"I'm just trying to give the team a chance to win every time I go out there, and I feel like I've done that," Warren said.
New York's Alex Rodriguez, one homer shy of tying Willie Mays for fourth place on MLB's all-time list, was 0-for-3 with a walk ... The Yankees have won nine times in an 11-game stretch for the first time since a 10-2 sequence from Aug. 11-22, 2013 ... The Rays had homered in 13 straight visits to Yankee Stadium prior to Monday's result ... Longoria is 10-of-15 over his last four contests and is batting .565 (13-of-23) over a six-game hitting streak.