Martinez outpitches Halladay in BoSox win
Pedro Martinez was back in top form and outpitched Roy Halladay again, while Alex Rodriguez took an unusual step to find his rhythm at the plate.
Martinez won the matchup of Cy Young winners for the second time in a month, retiring 15 of his first 17 batters and leading the visiting Boston Red Sox to a 4-2 win over the Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday night.
"I felt a lot better inside here than last time," Martinez said. "I felt loose and didn't have a hard time warming up. I had my normal routine back, and that was the difference."
In his last start, Martinez gave up seven runs in the Red Sox's 12-7, 11-inning loss to Baltimore. It was the first time Martinez allowed seven runs since opening day 2003.
In Chicago, A-Rod sparked the Yankees' seven-run first inning with a surprise bunt single and ended up with three hits for his second multihit game of the season, and New York defeated the White Sox 11-8.
"It all starts with seeing the ball," Rodriguez said. "When you don't see it well, you get jumpy and have a tendency to chase pitches you don't want to swing at. But that's the best I've felt in four or five days.
"I don't ever feel like I'm struggling. I feel like every at-bat I'm going to get a hit."
But the hits haven't come for Rodriguez since joining the Yankees. Coming off a lost weekend in Boston in which he went 1-for-17, Rodriguez is 11-for-56 with just one homer and three RBIs. He went 3-for-6 Tuesday to raise his batting average to a paltry .196.
In other AL games, it was: Baltimore 9, Tampa Bay 1; Kansas City 15, Cleveland 5; Minnesota 6, Detroit 4; Seattle 2, Oakland 1; and Texas 6, Anaheim 3.
In Toronto, Martinez (2-1) struck out six in seven innings, allowing two runs and five hits. The only batter to reach against him in the first five innings was Carlos Delgado, who went 2-for-4 to end an 0-for-15 slide. Martinez also defeated Halladay (1-3) on April 10 at Boston.
Halladay gave up three runs and nine hits in six innings, striking out seven.
"Doc, just being Doc, helped keep us in this game," Blue Jays manager Carlos Tosca said of Halladay. "It could have been a lot worse."
Jason Varitek was 3-for-3 and Bill Mueller scored two runs for the Red Sox, who had just won three of four against the Yankees in Fenway Park.
Toronto reliever Terry Adams nearly hit Manny Ramirez in the head in the eighth inning, and the Boston slugger walked out from the plate as the benches emptied, but things quickly settled down.
At Chicago, Derek Jeter reached on an infield hit to first when he beat Mark Buehrle (1-1) to the bag, Bernie Williams singled to right and then Rodriguez bunted to third.
"We're in survival mode and we needed a win," Rodriguez said, explaining his strategy. "I saw (third baseman) Joe Crede back. Plus, it's a no-lose situation - get the guys over."
The Yankees got back to .500 with their biggest first inning in nine years in a game delayed twice by rain.
Jorge Posada drove in four runs and had three hits, including a two-run single in the first and a solo homer in the eighth. Miguel Cairo capped the first-inning outburst with a three-run double.
Paul Quantrill (2-0) pitched two innings of relief for the win, and Mariano Rivera worked the ninth for his fourth save.
Orioles 9, Devil Rays 1
At Baltimore, Sidney Ponson (2-0) needed just 88 pitches in a four-hitter, and Rafael Palmeiro drove in three runs in the Orioles' fifth straight win.
Melvin Mora homered, and Miguel Tejada and Javy Lopez both had three hits.
Mark Hendrickson (0-2) gave up five runs and eight hits in four-plus innings.
Royals 15, Indians 5
At Cleveland, Matt Stairs' eighth grand slam followed an intentional walk to Juan Gonzalez. Stairs matched a career-high with six RBIs, helping Kansas City end a six-game road losing streak.
Brian Anderson (1-0) became the first Royals starter to win, allowing four runs - two earned - and seven hits in six innings. Chad Durbin (1-2) lasted just 1 1-3 innings.
Twins 6, Tigers 4
At Minneapolis, Lew Ford, Michael Ryan and Nick Punto each drove in two runs to lead the Twins to their sixth straight victory.
Ryan, a seldom-used outfielder, went 3-for-3 for the Twins.
Carlos Silva (2-0) won his second straight start for Minnesota, and Joe Nathan pitched the ninth for his third save.
Mariners 2, Athletics 1
At Seattle, Raul Ibanez homered to tie it in the seventh, and then again in the ninth off Jim Mecir (0-1) to give the Mariners a victory over Oakland.
Ron Villone (1-0) pitched the eighth and ninth for Seattle, allowing just one walk.
Rangers 6, Angels 3
Brad Fullmer homered off Ramon Ortiz (0-2) and drove in two runs in his first game in Anaheim since signing with Texas as a free agent in the offseason.
Kenny Rogers (3-0) allowed two runs and seven hits in five innings, striking out three and walking two. Francisco Cordero got his third save.