NEW YORK (AP) -- Rafael Palmeiro couldn't wait to get out of
Boston so he could do what he does best -- hit the longball.
Palmeiro hit two of Texas' four homers off Mike Mussina, leading
Chan Ho Park and the Rangers over the New York Yankees 6-2 Friday
night.Palmeiro hit leadoff shots in the second and fourth innings,
giving him 483 career homers."I'm swinging the bat OK,'' Palmeiro said. "You have to
scratch Boston. I don't feel comfortable hitting in Boston.''Palmeiro went 3-for-5 Friday after going 1-for-10 without a home
run in a three-game series at Fenway Park. He had homered in three
of his four games before facing the Red Sox. Herbert Perry hit a solo shot in the fourth and Carl Everett
added a two-run drive in the sixth as the Rangers handed the AL
East leaders their third loss in five games. Texas has 177 homers
this season, second in the majors to the Yankees' 188.Park (5-6), activated from the disabled list earlier in the day,
scattered seven hits in six innings. He gave up an RBI double to
Jason Giambi and Jeter's 15th homer of the season.The right-hander left his start on Aug. 6 after just three
innings with a blister and was put on the DL the next day.
"Chan Ho did a nice job of pitching backwards, and keeping us
off balance,'' Giambi said of Park, who threw fastballs in breaking
pitch situations, and fastballs when Yankees' hitters were looking
for curveballs.Park, pitching like the No. 1 starter the Rangers had hoped he
would be when they signed the former Los Angeles Dodgers ace to a
$65 million, five-year free agent contract in the offseason, struck
out six while walking only one."That's the idea. To be able to go up against a good team and
pitch like that,'' acting manager Terry Francona said. "There were
a lot of positives. He had some pop on his fastball -- a crispness
to it. He battled. He gave us six good innings.Ruben Rivera was heartily booed by the Yankee Stadium crowd of
50,871 when he came in as a pinch-hitter in the seventh. Rivera was
dismissed from the Yankees during spring training after he admitted
stealing Derek Jeter's glove.Mussina (15-7) gave up five runs -- all on homers -- and eight
hits in six innings.
"I think I threw the ball pretty good, but their guys hit some
home runs,'' Mussina said. "It wasn't like there were runners all
over the place. If you get A-Rod out three times you think
everything's going to be all right.''Alex Rodriguez went 0-for-4, three times to end an inning.
Palmeiro followed two of the outs with leadoff homers. He singled
the third time."Both the pitches (homers) I hit, I think were not where he
wanted them,'' Palmeiro said.In his start at Texas on July 31, Mussina gave up 11 hits and
seven runs in just three innings. He has allowed at least four runs
in five of his last six starts.After Giambi drove in Alfonso Soriano with his double in the
first, Palmeiro led off the second with a drive over the 408-foot
sign in center field to tie it at 1.Jeter homered leading off the third to put the Yankees up, but
Palmeiro tied it again in the fourth.The homer was Palmeiro's 36th of the season. It also gave him
his 30th career multihomer game, and first this year.Mike Lamb's RBI double off Sterling Hitchcock in the eighth made it 6-2.
Jeter needs to score only one more run to become the third
player since 1900 to score at least 100 in his first seven seasons.
The Yankees' Earle Combs (1925-32) and Ted Williams (1939-49) each
did it in their first eight years. ... Bernie Williams extended his
hitting streak to 14 games with a third-inning single. ... Rangers
manager Jerry Narron missed his second straight game to attend the
funeral of his father in Goldsboro, N.C. He'll be back with the
team Saturday. ... Mussina gave up five homers while with Baltimore
on July 1, 1994, against the California Angels.