As all-star closer Joe Nathan walked to the mound in the ninth inning with the Metrodome crowd roaring, the Minnesota Twins looked to be on their way to a sweep of the New York Yankees.
Gary Sheffield changed all that with one powerful swing.
Sheffield homered twice and keyed a four-run rally in the ninth inning last night, sending the visiting Yankees to a seesaw 13-10 win over the Twins.
Nathan, who hadn't allowed a run in 29 innings, got Derek Jeter to ground out leading off the ninth with Minnesota clinging to a one-run lead. His next pitch was a low fastball to Sheffield, who somehow reached down and drove it into the left-center seats.
"It was a good pitch," Sheffield said. "It was just a situation where I was trying to be aggressive. If you get behind in the count with him, he's lights-out. I was just trying to get on base and give us a chance to win the ballgame."
Alex Rodriguez, just back from a four-game suspension, followed with a single and a stolen base. That set the stage for Hideki Matsui, who grounded a go-ahead single.
Later in the inning, pinch hitter Ruben Sierra had an RBI single, and another run scored on a throwing error by center fielder Lew Ford.
Ford entered as a replacement for Hunter, who strained his neck when he ran into the padded wall while sprinting after Jorge Posada's double in the fifth. Hunter stayed down on the warning track for several minutes, left the field on a cart and was day-to-day.
* ANGELS 10, DEVIL RAYS 7: Vladimir Guerrero hit a three-run homer, and Josh Paul added a grand slam to lead Anaheim to the road win.
Darin Erstad hit a two-run shot for the Angels, who took two of three at Tampa Bay and have won 10 of 14 overall. Anaheim trails AL West-leading Oakland by 11/2 games and is one game behind wild-card leaders Boston and Texas.
"We need to take care of our business and let all that stuff work itself out," Paul said.
It was Paul's second homer of the season for Anaheim, which opens a three-game series against the AL East-leading Yankees tonight.
"It's always fun to play in Yankee Stadium," Paul said. "It gets me up."
The victory was the 400th for Mike Scioscia (400-369) as Angels manager.
* TIGERS 8, WHITE SOX 4: Bobby Higginson homered twice, and Wilfredo Ledezma pitched six effective innings for visiting Detroit.
Craig Monroe and Higginson hit consecutive solo shots in the second. Higginson's three-run drive in the third capped Detroit's five-run outburst and finished Jon Garland (8-9).
Ledezma (3-0) blanked the White Sox for the first five innings and had an 8-0 lead before Chicago scored three in the sixth, capped by Juan Uribe's two-run homer.
* MARINERS-ROYALS, PPD: The game in Kansas City, Mo., was postponed by rain before it began. It will be made up as a doubleheader on Aug. 28 at Seattle. The Mariners are not scheduled to return to Kansas City this year, and the teams do not have a common day off.