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Ellsbury, Phelps lead Yankees to 4-3 win over Reds

Published on NewsOK Modified: July 18, 2014 at 10:29 pm •  Published: July 18, 2014
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NEW YORK (AP) — If the pitching-depleted New York Yankees plan to make a second-half charge, they will need several specific contributions the rest of the way:

Big hits from Brian McCann and Carlos Beltran.

Steady starts from David Phelps and a makeshift rotation.

Maybe a little more punch from No. 3 batter Jacoby Ellsbury.

First game after the All-Star break? Check, check, check.

Ellsbury hit a two-run homer, Phelps pitched into the seventh inning, and the Yankees beat the Cincinnati Reds 4-3 on Friday night.

"Big win for us to start the second half," Ellsbury said. "You always want to play well at home. You should play well at home. I think we're going to."

McCann and Beltran had two-out RBIs for the Yankees (48-47), who began a 10-game homestand by winning the opener of an interleague series against a National League contender. New York, with a major league-high 40 home games after the break, snapped a five-game losing streak at Yankee Stadium and improved to 19-23 in its ballpark.

All-Star reliever Dellin Betances struck out three in 1 2-3 perfect innings, and David Robertson worked a one-hit ninth for his 24th save in 26 chances.

"A week off always helps," Betances said. "I just felt like maybe I had a little more power."

Phelps (4-4) gave up three runs — two earned — in 6 1-3 innings against a lineup missing injured thumpers Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips. The right-hander struck out seven and walked one for his first win since June 19 against Toronto, which preceded four straight no-decisions.

Phelps is 3-0 in seven outings since a four-game skid, and he has yielded two earned runs or fewer in six of those seven starts.

"Regardless of what the rotation looks like, I pride myself on being consistent," he said. "That's one thing I've always strived for in the big leagues and even in the minor leagues. When our rotation does take hits, I kind of put (it) on myself to step up."

It was the kind of effort New York needs from the unheralded fill-ins in its injury-ravaged rotation. Before the game, general manager Brian Cashman announced that left-hander CC Sabathia is scheduled for surgery on his right knee Wednesday — ending any hope of him returning this year.

"We need everybody to step up," Ellsbury said.

Brayan Pena, subbing for Votto at first base, homered twice for the Reds.

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