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Yankees 5, Indians 4

The SportsXchange

NEW YORK -- The New York Yankees won their fifth straight game, but lost two of their top starters Wednesday.

Robinson Cano hit his seventh home run in his past 10 games and Eric Chavez had two hits and three RBI as the Yankees topped the Cleveland Indians, 5-4.

For the second game in a row, the Yankees withstood a ninth-inning rally from the Indians, who lost their fifth straight game.

But the Yankees absorbed a couple of tough blows as they placed ace CC Sabathia on the 15-day disabled list, then saw Andy Pettitte break his ankle on a fifth-inning line drive, an injury that will sideline him for at least six weeks, the club said.

Pettitte had looked sharp through four innings, allowing two runs, but only one earned, on three hits, while striking out seven.

But Indians first baseman Casey Kotchman led off the fifth with a line drive off Pettitte's left ankle. He initially tried to stay in the game, throwing some warm-up pitches, before giving way to Cody Eppley.

The Yankees later announced that Pettitte had fractured the ankle, and would require crutches and a boot, but not surgery. The news followed the pre-game announcement that Sabathia would miss at least two starts due to a grade 1 strain of his left groin. He's expected to be out until the All-Star break.

The Indians, who have struggled to score for most of the past week, again put a late scare into the Yankees, loading the bases and scoring a run against closer Rafael Soriano to make it 5-4.

Lonnie Chisenhall led off with a single before Shin-Soo Choo walked and, one out later, Lou Marson singled to load the bases.

Soriano struck out former Yankee Johnny Damon for the second out, but walked Michael Brantley to force in a run and make it 5-4.

After falling behind Asdrubal Cabrera 1-0, Soriano got him on a fly to end the game and earn his 17th save of the season.

Trailing 2-1 when Pettitte left in the fifth, Cleveland rallied for two runs on four hits against Eppley and Clay Rapada.

Marson followed Kotchman with another single and, one out later, the Yankees appeared to get out of trouble as Chavez, playing first, threw home to cut down Kotchman at the plate on Brantley's grounder.

But Cabrera and Jason Kipnis added RBI singles to give Cleveland a 3-2 lead before Freddy Garcia (2-2) relieved and struck out Jose Lopez to end the inning.

The Yankees, who had scored their first run on Chavez's double, responded in the sixth. Alex Rodriguez led off with a double off Ubaldo Jimenez (7-6), who then brushed Cano back with an inside fastball.

If the pitch had a purpose, it wasn't served, as Cano came right back to drill an opposite-field homer for a 4-3 lead.

That marked the last inning for Jimenez, who allowed the four runs on four hits while striking out seven and walking four.

While the bullpen shut down the Indians for the next three innings, the Yankees added an insurance run in the eighth off reliever Vinnie Pestano, on three singles, the last coming from Chavez.

NOTES: Garcia was scheduled to take Sabathia's spot in the rotation Friday, manager Joe Girardi said before the game, but he pitched 2 1/3 innings of relief when Pettitte left Wednesday's game. ... Right-hander Adam Warren, 5-5, 3.86 ERA for Class AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (Pa.), will likely take Sabathia's spot on the roster, general manager Brian Cashman said before Wednesday's game. He could now be a candidate to start in Sabathia's spot Friday. ... Catcher Russell Martin returned to the lineup after missing the past three games with a stiff back. ... Cleveland claimed utility man Vinny Rottino off outright waivers from the Mets. Rottino hit .182 with two homers and five RBI in 18 games for the Mets. ... RHP Chris Schwinden, who was 1-2 with a 5.87 ERA for Class AAA Columbus (Ohio) was designated for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster for Rottino.
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