Three stars for Yankees against Rangers

07/31/2014 9:56 AM ET
By staff
A tough 3-2 loss in Wednesday's series finale cost the Yankees a chance to take the series in Arlington. But New York still saw some impressive performances during the three-game set. Here's three Yankees who stood out.

Derek Jeter: 5 for 13 (.384), 1 legend passed, 1 ex-President met

It wasn't a classic Jeter series, as Wednesday's 0 for 4 in a 3-2 loss marred an otherwise strong trip in Texas for the Yankees Captain. But Jeter still took time to make some history, passing Carl Yastrzemski on baseball's all-time hits list with career hit No. 3,420 in Monday's loss in the opener. The latest milestone wasn't necessarily Jeter's biggest, but it was another brick in the history-making road he's travelling in his final season.

The Rangers certainly realized how special Jeter's final tour through Arlington was, enlisting the help of Former President George W. Bush to honor the great Yankee during Wednesday's finale. Along with the 43rd President of these United States, retired Rangers All-Stars Michael Young and Ivan Rodriguez presented Jeter with a pair of Cowboy boots in what was a fitting tribute for the great shortstop.

Carlos Beltran: 6 for 13 (.462), 2 RBI

Carlos Beltran has simply raked of late. The veteran slugger, who has battled through injuries for much of the season, has been feeling rejuvenated, and chipped in with a pair of hits in each of the three games in Texas, including a pair of RBI in New York's wild 12-11 win on Tuesday night.

Beltran is now hitting .300 for the month of July, and is riding a seven-game hitting streak. During the seven games, he's hit .423 (11 for 26) with two home runs and six RBI. A strong second half from Beltran would go a long way to kick-staring what's been an inconsistent Yankees offense.

Brett Gardner: 8 for 14 (.571), 4 HR, 4 RBI, 6 R

Brett Gardner was a one-man wrecking crew in Texas. The speedy outfielder belted four home runs, including two in a losing effort on Monday night. Gardner now has 14 home runs on the season, easily surpassing his previous career high of eight from a season ago. Known more for his speed on the bases, Gardner's unlikely power surge has taken off this month, where his seven home runs in July would rank ahead of all but one of his previous six seasons in the majors.

Gardner signed what at the time seemed like a lucrative extension this offseason, inking a four-year, $52 million deal to stay with the Yankees. But that hefty contract now looks like a bargain, as the outfielder has quickly become one of the team's best all-around players.

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