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Crosby's homer gives Mussina 200th win

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Crosby's homer gives Mussina 200th win

Postby WebHamster » Sun Apr 11, 2004 9:00 pm

Bronx, NY (Sports Network) - Bubba Crosby hit a three-run homer as the New York Yankees rallied for a 5-4 win over the Chicago White Sox in the finale of a four-game set at Yankee Stadium.

Crosby, stepping into the lineup with centerfielder Kenny Lofton sidelined for the second straight day with a sore calf, helped the Yankees manage a split of the series. Gary Sheffield went 3-for-4 with a pair of RBI in the win.

Mike Mussina (1-2) finally recorded his 200th win in his fifth try at the mark, rebounding from a rough start to toss 6 1/3 solid innings. Mussina, who dropped both of his previous starts this season to the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, allowed seven hits and three runs for the win.

"[Crosby] had a great game," Mussina said. "We couldn't have won without him."

Jose Valentin homered for the second straight day for the White Sox, who had won the previous two encounters. Dan Wright (0-1) suffered the loss after giving up five runs -- four earned -- on four hits and three walks in 4 2/3 innings of work.

The White Sox jumped on Mussina for three quick runs in the first. Mussina didn't help his own cause when he was unable to handle an easy ground ball up the middle by Valentin with one out in the frame for his first error since 2002. Magglio Ordonez and Frank Thomas then followed with singles up the middle to put the White Sox ahead 1-0. Carlos Lee proceeded to give Chicago a three-run lead with a two-run double into the gap in right-center.

Mussina settled down after the slow start and the Yankees offense got them back in the game. Sheffield singled in a run in the bottom of the first, and the deficit stood at 3-1 until Crosby did his damage in the fourth.

Sheffield and Jorge Posada both walked prior to Crosby's second home run of the season. He crushed an offering by Wright off the second deck in right field in the fourth, giving the Yankees a 4-3 lead.

"I left some balls up," Wright said. "But for the most part I stayed under control pretty well. ,I probably tried to overthrow a few of them, but the home run was the turning point."

But Valentin quickly drew the White Sox even with a solo home run in the top of the fifth. The Yankees, though, answered immediately to re-claim the lead.

Bernie Williams was hit by a pitch to start the bottom of the fifth and later scored on a double into the gap by Sheffield.

Mussina cruised through the sixth but needed help to get out of the seventh. Valentin tripled with two down to end Mussina's day, and Tom Gordon came on to retire Ordonez on a fly ball to center. Gordon then cruised through the eighth before handing the ball over to Mariano Rivera for the ninth.

Rivera hit the first batter of the inning but then struck out Timo Perez looking. Russ Gload stroked a pinch-hit single to put runners on first and second with just one man out. But Rivera settled down and fanned Willie Harris before Valentin grounded harmlessly to second to end the game.

The scoreless ninth inning gave Rivera his third save of the season.
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