NEW YORK (AP) — Derek Jeter gave Yangervis Solarte some assistance with Yankee Stadium tradition, then the rookie helped make the captain a winner in his final home opener Monday as New York beat the Baltimore Orioles 4-2 in the American League.
Jeter, who will retire at the end of the 2014 season, doubled high off the left-field wall and scored on Jacoby Ellsbury’s single in the fifth. Hiroki Kuroda (1-1) went 6 1-3 sharp innings in the Yankees’ 112th opener in New York.
Playing in his first game in the Bronx, Solarte needed Jeter to tell him to wave to the group of fans known as the Bleacher Creatures when they chanted his name during the pregame roll call.
Jeter’s double-play grounder back to Orioles starter Ubaldo Jimenez (0-2) then scored Solarte in the third inning for the Yankees’ first run.
Shawn Kelley pitched a perfect ninth for his first career save. After the game, the Yankees said closer David Robertson would be put on the disabled list with a strained groin.
RED SOX 5, RANGERS 1
BOSTON (AP) — John Lackey pitched seven strong innings and Jackie Bradley Jr. singled in two runs as Boston ended a three-game losing streak with a win over Texas.
The Red Sox never lost more than three straight last year when they won the World Series. They avoided dropping their first four home games for the first time since 1984.
Lackey (2-0) allowed an unearned run and five hits in seven innings. Chris Capuano pitched the eighth and Koji Uehara escaped a ninth-inning jam in a non-save situation.
Tanner Scheppers (0-1) allowed Bradley’s run-scoring hits in the second and fourth, and Boston added three runs in the eighth.
Bradley, Mike Napoli and A.J. Pierzynski each had three singles for the Red Sox.
ROYALS 4, RAYS 2
KANSAS CITY, Missouri (AP) — Jason Vargas took a shutout into the ninth inning and Alcides Escobar hit a three-run double as Kansas City beat Tampa Bay in a game that included two significant injuries.
Rays starter Matt Moore (0-2) came out in the fifth inning with a sore left elbow. The Major League Baseball All-Star lefty grimaced after throwing a pitch to Norichika Aoki and was immediately removed by manager Joe Maddon.
Two innings later, Royals second baseman Omar Infante was hit in the face by a pitch from reliever Heath Bell and also left the game.
Vargas (1-0) allowed four hits in eight-plus innings, lowering his ERA to 1.20 in two starts. He lost his shutout bid when Ben Zobrist homered on his second pitch in the ninth.
Greg Holland earned his third save, but not before giving up an RBI single to pinch-hitter Matt Joyce.
Escobar was 1 for 19 before his bases-loaded double off the left field wall with two outs in the seventh.
Evan Longoria had three hits for the Rays, who have lost seven straight in Kansas City.
ANGELS 9, ASTROS 1
HOUSTON (AP) — C.J. Wilson pitched eight solid innings and Howie Kendrick and Raul Ibanez each drove in three runs as Los Angeles beat Houston.
The Angels took three of four from Houston after starting the season 0-3.
Kole Calhoun homered off Houston starter Jarred Cosart (1-1).
Wilson (1-1) yielded four hits and a run while fanning seven.
ATHLETICS 8, TWINS 3
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Yoenis Cespedes proved he can play through a injured right heel, giving Oakland a spark with a pair of RBIs that helped spoil Minnesota’s home opener.
Cespedes, who has been hobbling around the last few days with the injury, hit a double in the second inning for the first run against Kevin Correia (0-1) and later had a sacrifice fly.
Moss added a two-run single in the third and Derek Norris homered in the sixth.
Scott Kazmir (2-0) allowed three runs and six hits.