NEW YORK -- The New York Yankees trailed by three runs Friday, having been limited to two in the first seven innings by one of baseball's best starters.
Having finally chased Los Angeles Angels lefty C.J. Wilson, they got to face Scott Downs, who allowed just one earned run in the season's first half.
The Yankees continued to flex their muscles as the team with the best record in the majors, as Mark Teixeira's second home run of the game tied it in the eighth inning and Russell Martin's two-out single off Kevin Jepsen gave the Yankees the lead.
New Yor would wrap up its come-from-behind 6-5 win when Martin threw out his third baserunner of the game, catching Howie Kendrick, who tried to advance to second on a pitch that got away.
Martin, who ended the first half hitting .179 and wondered if he might get pinch-hit for in the eighth, capped his fresh start and big night with a pump of the fist.
"I felt like I had a good day overall," a smiling Martin said. "I was happy that we won. I feel a lot better now than I did before and during the game. Starting to feel a little better about myself, so that's never a bad thing."
The Angels had taken a 4-2 lead on Mark Trumbo's three-run homer in the seventh and extended the advantage to 5-2 in the eighth on a RBI double by Albert Pujols. Trumbo just missed another homer, as Nick Swisher's leaping catch at the scoreboard in right-center robbed him of at least an extra-base hit.
"If he doesn't make that catch, we probably don't get back in that game," Teixeira said of Swisher.
Then the Yankees stunned Downs (1-1) with Teixeira's three-run homer to tie it before taking the lead on Martin's clutch single.
"It's a tough one to stomach," said Trumbo, who homered against the Yankees in his fifth straight game against them. "It's just a credit to them. They're obviously a very potent lineup. In this ballpark, there's really no lead that's safe. I think it was a perfect example tonight."
Teixeira's second home run, near the left field foul pole, tied the game 5-5. The homer drove in Derek Jeter, who had hit a leadoff double, and Curtis Granderson, who had walked.
After Downs recovered to retire the next two batters, he walked Swisher, then was relieved by righty Jepsen. Pinch runner Dewayne Wise stole second, and Jepsen intentionally walked pinch hitter Raul Ibanez.
Martin then singled down the right field line to score Wise for a 6-5 lead.
"That was huge," Teixeira said. "Big hit."
Martin said he would have understood if manager Joe Girardi had sent up a pinch hitter for him, "but I'm glad he didn't."
Girardi said he never thought about it because he liked Martin's at-bats during the game, though Martin had gone 0-for-2 with a walk.
Rafael Soriano pitched a scoreless ninth for his 21st save of the season, with help from Martin after Kendrick singled with one out. With two outs, Martin tracked down a ball in the dirt a few feet from home plate and threw out Kendrick.
Erick Aybar also homered for the Angels. Mike Trout and Pujols had two hits apiece.
Wilson allowed two runs on five hits while striking out seven and throwing 101 pitches.
"He made some pitches," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "C.J. was in command of his counts much better tonight than he had been in some of his earlier starts."
Chad Qualls (2-1) got the win by recording two outs in relief of Hiroki Kuroda, who gave up five runs on eight hits in 7 1/3 innings.
Up 4-2 in the eighth, the Angels added a run to chase Kuroda, when Pujols doubled in Trout, who led off the inning with a double.
Trailing 2-1 after Kuroda scattered three hits in the first six innings and Martin threw out a pair of would-be base stealers, the Angels took the lead in the seventh.
Pujols singled to start the inning. After Kuroda hit Kendrys Morales with a pitch, Trumbo smacked his 23rd homer of the season on a 1-1 pitch for a 4-2 lead.
Granderson led off the sixth with a triple, as the ball bounced past diving center fielder Trout. But it would end up being the first of two straight innings in which the Yankees couldn't get a runner home from third with one out or less.
Wilson retired Teixeira on a grounder to third and Alex Rodriguez with a grounder to short with the infield in. Robinson Cano then hit a soft liner to short.
In the bottom of the seventh, Swisher led off with a double and moved to third on Andruw Jones' fly to right, but Martin grounded out and Jayson Nix struck out to end the inning.
Teixeira got the Yankees on the board with his 16th home run of the season in the third inning, giving New York a 2-1 lead. The two-out, two-run shot also scored Jeter, who had singled. The run was the 1,817th of Jeter's career, pushing him past Boston's Carl Yastrzemski for sole possession of 16th place on the majors' all-time list.
Aybar's solo shot to right in the third gave the Angels a 1-0 lead right after Teixeira stole a hit from Howie Kendrick at first base. Teixeira dived to his right to snag a ball that seemed set to go through the hole, then threw to Kuroda for the out.
NOTES: Yankees left-hander CC Sabathia (strained groin) is scheduled to come off the disabled list and start Tuesday. He reported no setbacks after throwing a simulated game Friday. ... New York left-hander Andy Pettitte (fractured ankle) rejoined the team Friday and threw off flat ground. He said he would stay with the team and wanted to travel with his teammates while rehabbing. He's expected back by Sept. 1. ... Outfielder Kosuke Fukudome signed a minor league deal with the Yankees and will be assigned to Class AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (Pa.). He hit .171 with four RBI in 24 games for the Chicago White Sox before getting released late last month. ... The Yankees signed their first-round draft choice, right-hander Ty Hensley. ... Angels right-hander Dan Haren (back stiffness) is scheduled to throw a second bullpen session Saturday, according to the Angels. Haren also threw in the bullpen Thursday. Haren, on the DL since July 4, could make a minor league rehab start Tuesday and return July 22. ... To honor former Yankees owner George Steinbrenner on the two-year anniversary of his death, his granddaughter, Haley Swindal, sang the national anthem before the game.