The Yankees won a game Sunday night in part because the Angels fell apart in the bottom of the eighth, but if they are going to avoid another baseball-free October, Mark Teixeira’s game-tying blast in the seventh may prove to be even more important.

“It was a good swing,” Teixeira said following the Yankees 3-2 win in The Bronx. “I haven’t had one of those in quite a while, since before the surgery, before the injury, really. It’s a good sign.”
In the next breath, Teixeira repeated again that he still thinks about his surgically repaired wrist. But he was able to turn on a Garrett Richards pitch and send it deep into the right-field seats.
“I want to keep doing that, obviously,” Teixeira said. “Hopefully, this is the first step to a lot of those.”

The blast helped save Masahiro Tanaka from his first regular-season loss since Aug. 19, 2012, when he was with the Rakuten Golden Eagles. An inning later, the Yankees went ahead.

Angels reliever Michael Kohn (1-1) began by walking Ellsbury to start the Yankees rally. Kohn repeatedly threw over to first and while the righty managed to strike out Derek Jeter, he walked Carlos Beltran on four pitches before being yanked for Nick Maronde, who wasn’t any better.

With Brian McCann at the plate, catcher Chris Iannetta barely got his glove on a passed ball that allowed Ellsbury and Beltran to advance a base. Then Maronde let loose a wild pitch, scoring Ellsbury from third to give the Yankees the lead.

“It’s a hassle when you have to watch him on the bases, knowing what he could possibly do,” Joe Girardi said of the speedy Ellsbury.
When asked if Ellsbury had the green light in that situation, Girardi said with a smile: “I’m not going to tell you always what I’m going to do. He was 52-for-56 [in stolen-base attempts] last year.”

David Robertson, who had a 26-pitch save on Saturday, finished off the Angels again for his fourth save of the year, this time needing 24 pitches.