Mark Teixeira paused ever so briefly from describing his dynamite day to cough and clear his throat.
It's no longer the debilitating, bothersome coughing and bronchial illness he experienced early in the season -- and his increased strength of late sure shows in his power swing.
Three home runs and seven RBIs in two games.
Teixeira hit a two-run homer and a solo shot among his career high-tying four hits to back CC Sabathia's sixth win of the year, and the New York Yankees beat the Oakland Athletics, 9-2, Saturday for their fourth straight win to match a season best.
"I'm glad I'm seeing some results. Just being real aggressive with my swings and trying to let it go, which I've done my whole career," said Teixeira, whose five RBIs were a career high. "I am who I am. I wouldn't know how to explain what kind of hitter I am. I just go up and try to see the ball and hit it really hard. You're clearing your head, swinging hard and hoping for the best. That's what I've always done."
Teixeira and Robinson Cano each homered for a second straight day as the Yankees added three more longballs to give them nine homers in the last three games.
What a change for Teixeira, whose physical limitations kept him from clearing the fences even when he felt he was swinging as hard as he could.
Teixeira hit a solo home run in the fourth, added a two-run single in the fifth when New York broke it open and had a two-run homer in the ninth, almost single handily sending Oakland to its season-worst fourth straight defeat. Manager Joe Girardi said before the game he believes Teixeira is getting back to his former slugging self.
Derek Jeter hit a go-ahead RBI single in the third to give him 3,153 career hits for 15th on baseball's career list, then Jeter beat out a bunt single in the fifth to tie George Brett for 14th place with 3,154. Alex Rodriguez added a sacrifice fly in New York's three-run fifth.
Oakland's Josh Reddick connected leading off the third for his 13th home run and second in as many games, but the A's lost their eighth in a row at home to the Yankees in the Coliseum.
"After the home run he threw more sliders and curves and that made his fastball look even faster coming in," Reddick said. "I'm happy I'm swinging the bat but unfortunately we're not winning games. We have a team full of power and they know we'll turn it around.
Sabathia (6-2), back in his native Bay Area with 200 friends and family in the stands, outpitched former Yankee Bartolo Colon and drew cheers when introduced before the game. Former A's six-time Gold Glove third baseman Eric Chavez also received a warm welcome when he came to the plate leading off the third, and again after he doubled.
"They scored runs and kind of took the pressure off," Sabathia said. "I think we have one of the best offenses in the league."
Jonny Gomes hit a two-out RBI single off Sabathia in the first to put Oakland ahead, then New York quickly tied it on Cano's drive into the bleachers to start the second.