Baseball

Jays fall to A-Rod, Yankees

Alex Rodriguez's 600th career home run helped the New York Yankees defeat the Toronto Blue Jays 5-1 Wednesday.

Toronto's John Buck injured in the fifth inning

After all his struggles to hit his 600th home run, Alex Rodriguez reached the milestone with style.

He became the youngest player to attain the mighty mark, driving a pitch into Yankee Stadium's Monument Park in centre field exactly three years to the day after his 500th homer.

His two-run, first-inning drive off Toronto's Shaun Marcum put New York ahead, and the Yankees coasted to a 5-1 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on a sweltering Wednesday afternoon to end a three-game losing streak.

A-Rod reached the milestone after a 12-game drought, connecting with a 2-0 pitch over the middle of the plate for his 17th home run of the season. Because the ball landed in Monument Park, a stadium worker managed to retrieve it for him. 

The ball he hit was the 104th specially marked one that had been used for each of his plate appearances since reaching No. 599. The Yankees immediately put commemorative T-shirts on sale at concession stands for $25 US each, and one stand behind home plate sold out within two innings.

Rodriguez received a brief ovation when he came up again in the third inning, then grounded out to shortstop en route to a 1-for-4 day. Jeter had four hits and scored three runs, and Mark Teixeira drove in three runs with an RBI double in the third and a two-run single in the fifth.

Phil Hughes (13-4) allowed one run and four hits in 5 1-3 innings. Marcum (10-5), who had won three straight starts, gave up five runs and eight hits in six innings.

Blue Jays all-star catcher John Buck came out of the game in the fifth inning, when he was struck by a foul tip from Rodriguez, four innings after the slugger hit his 600th.

Buck was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a cut right thumb. X-rays were negative but Buck needed three stitches to close the cut.

Jose Molina replaced Buck after a brief delay. 

Buck is hitting .279 with 14 homers and 49 RBIs. 

The Blue Jays selected the contract of catcher J.P. Arencibia from triple-A Las Vegas after the game. The 24-year-old has been on a tear this season, batting .303 with 31 homers and 79 RBIs.

Arencibia was a first-round pick in 2007.