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Curtis Granderson, Robinson Cano add to the Yankees hit parade

Robinson Cano of the Yankees follows through on

Robinson Cano of the Yankees follows through on a second-inning RBI base hit against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Yankee Stadium. (Aug. 14, 2013) Credit: Jim McIsaac

The Yankee Stadium crowd chanted "Sori-ano!" during Alfonso Soriano's seventh-inning at-bat.

Curtis Granderson had just doubled and this suddenly-potent Yankees offense was looking to pad what was at the time a six-run lead.

Soriano, with seven RBIs, generated the buzz in the stadium for the second straight night, and Granderson's recent surge helped ignite a lineup that has erupted for 25 runs in the last two games.

A welcome sight for fans: the new old sparkplugs.

But lost in all that, somewhat, was Robinson Cano. All he did was go 4-for-4 with two runs and an RBI.

Cano has hit in nine straight contests and strung together two multi-hit games. He went 2-for-3 with two walks on Tuesday, and Wednesday night contributed to the onslaught.

Just as he predicted back in June.

"When we get our team together," Cano said on June 24, "things are going to be different."

He was talking then about the Yankees' offensive woes in the absence of Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Granderson and Mark Teixeira. The team, at that point, was heavily reliant on its role players.

Cano insisted then his production would improve as the auxiliary parts were reattached.

"I'm not trying to pull anything, not trying to do too much," Cano said Wednesday night. "You can tell the last two games. We've got those guys who hit homers . . . guys who've got good numbers. It makes you hit different."

The Yankees still rank 22nd in scoring, but the 25 runs is the team's biggest two-game output in more than five months. They also totaled 25 against the Indians on April 8 and 9.

The infusion of Soriano, Rodriguez and Granderson, clearly, has provided Cano protection in the lineup.

Granderson said last month the new-look lineup would force pitchers to think, "'OK, I can't just get around him.' Now you have to pitch to Cano and he can do damage."

Cano, a career .307 hitter, had his average dip to .287 on Aug. 7, but Wednesday night's performance pushed it to .297.

"He's a good hitter," Soriano said of Cano, a four-time Silver Slugger award winner. "With Alex and Granderson, we have a very good lineup now. That makes a difference. Now the pitcher has to work a little bit more."

Cano added to his spray chart Wednesday night: he singled to center in the first inning, singled to right in the second, and hit singles to left in the fourth and sixth.

"Our lineup is just a lot deeper than it was," manager Joe Girardi said. "We've got some big, productive hitters back and we acquired one as well. It's just changed our lineup."

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