DETROIT – The New York Yankees chased David Price with nine straight hits in an eight-run third inning, beating the Detroit Tigers 8-4 Wednesday night.
The Yankees scored all eight of their runs in the third off Price (12-10), who had pitched a one-hitter in his previous start. Jacoby Ellsbury started the barrage, and New York went all the way through the batting order until the 2012 AL Cy Young Award winner was pulled after the ninth hit of the inning.
Rookie Shane Greene (4-1) allowed two runs and five hits in seven innings, struck out eight and walked one.
The Yankees pulled within 2 1/2 games of Seattle for the second AL wild card, while Detroit remained a half-game behind the Mariners. The Tigers fell 2 1/2 games behind first-place Kansas City in the AL Central.
Victor Martinez homered for Detroit.
For the third time in less than a week, a Detroit starter was knocked out in under three innings. Spot starters Robbie Ray and Buck Farmer met that fate last week, but Price had been solid since the Tigers acquired the left-hander from Tampa Bay at last month’s trade deadline.
He pitched out of jams in the first and second innings Wednesday, but there was no escaping the third. Ellsbury led off with a single and scored on Derek Jeter’s double. Martin Prado added a single, and Mark Teixeira followed with a double that made it 2-0.
New York added five more singles – by Carlos Beltran, Brian McCann, Chase Headley, Brett Gardner and Francisco Cervelli. Not every ball was hit hard, but by the time reliever Blaine Hardy replaced Price, it was 6-0 and the bases were still loaded.
Price was the first pitcher who allowed nine straight hits in a game since Houston’s Bob Forsch gave up nine against Cincinnati on Aug. 3, 1989, according to STATS.
It was the second-shortest start of Price’s career. He went 1 1-3 innings at Texas on July 4, 2009. The 12 hits and eight runs he allowed Wednesday both equaled career highs.