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Photograph of Joe Girardi (27) about to pull pitcher Sidney Ponson (center) during the sixth inning after a pair of two-run home runs by Kathy Willens/AP

  • Yankees 18, Rangers 7: Sidney Ponson, who will soon be forgotten himself, made a start that will be forgotten. That's thanks in part to his ineffectiveness but mostly to the Yanks' offensive explosion spearheaded by Jason Giambi (grand slam, six RBIs) and Alex Rodriguez (homer, three RBIs, four runs scored). Every Yankees starter had a hit. That includes Brett Gardner, who could be the new center fielder if Melky Cabrera continues his sour play. Ponson, picked up as a stopgap measure, was barely decent -- but fully clothed -- until the sixth inning, when he allowed a pair of two-run home runs. But then the Yankees exploded for a nine-run seventh. Was that in reaction to chairman Hank Steinbrenner and his rant to The Associated Press? Probably just coincidence. Either way, the Yankees get a win under their belts before welcoming the second-place Red Sox to the Bronx for a four-game series.
  • Cardinals 8, Mets 7: Pedro Martinez also put forth a forgettable start. What will be remembered about this game is the bullpen's implosion. The Mets rallied from 4-0 down to tie the game, and they rallied from 5-4 down to make it 7-5. But Pedro Feliciano allowed a two-run homer in the eighth, and Carlos Muniz served up Troy Glaus' second homer of the night in the bottom of the ninth. Damion Easley had three hits playing over Luis Castillo, and David Wright, who has looked a lot better since he got a day off, had three hits as well. The Mets visit Philadelphia for a four-game set starting Thursday.