Sheffield, Yanks Rally for Win Over Twins

Friday, August 20th 2004, 6:55 am
By: News On 6

(AP)_The New York Yankees wasted a six-run lead and were about to get swept by the Minnesota Twins until Gary Sheffield saved them _ just as he has so often this season. Sheffield homered twice and keyed a four-run rally in the ninth inning Thursday night, sending the Yankees to a seesaw, 13-10 victory in Minnesota.

``I can't see anybody who's played better baseball in the last four months _ with a bad shoulder to boot. It's been awesome to watch,'' teammate Alex Rodriguez said.

Down 9-3 and minus Gold Glove center fielder Torii Hunter after he crashed into the fence, the Twins came back and nearly swept the three-game series between AL division leaders.

Shannon Stewart hit a two-out, two-run triple past Sheffield's lunge in right field, giving Minnesota a 10-9 lead in the eighth and capping an improbable comeback against New York's stellar bullpen.

But the Yankees bounced back when Sheffield hit a tying homer with one out off All-Star closer Joe Nathan (1-1), who had not allowed a run in 29 innings.

``I'm telling you, the pitch that he made to Sheffield wasn't a bad pitch,'' Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. ``Ninety-four mph, or whatever, down below the knees and he hit it out. That's just a pretty good hitter.''

In other AL games, it was: Anaheim 10, Tampa Bay 7; and Detroit 8, Chicago 4; Seattle's game in Kansas City was postponed by rain and rescheduled as part of a doubleheader Aug. 28 at Safeco Field.