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Brian McCann blasts away in eighth and ninth to lead rally

Brian McCann #34 of the New York Yankees

Brian McCann #34 of the New York Yankees celebrates his ninth inning game tying three run home run against the Texas Rangers at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday, June 29, 2016. Credit: Jim McIsaac

Brian McCann appeared to give and take, grabbing at his knee and hobbling briefly after rounding first base on a solo home run that brought the Yankees to within four in the eighth inning. But the catcher’s health woes lifted and so did his team’s fortune.

McCann hit a three-run homer to tie the score at 7 in the ninth and Didi Gregorius hit a walk-off home run two batters later, as the Yankees beat the Texas Rangers, 9-7, Wednesday night at the Stadium.

McCann, who went 2-for-3 with three runs scored and four RBIs, had his second multi-home run game of the season. He became the first Yankee to hit a game-tying home run in the ninth inning or later with the team trailing by at least three runs since Shelley Duncan hit a three-run bomb against Baltimore on Aug. 15, 2007.

“It was a huge win,” McCann said. “We felt like the one two days ago got away.”

On motioning to his leg: “I’ve got patella tendinitis,” he added. “I’ve been dealing with it for a little bit. I hit first base and something grabbed. Rounding the bases I didn’t know what to think. It just kind of grabbed on me.”

McCann said his team hasn’t been playing its best baseball recently — the Yankees lost three straight heading into the day, two of the losses by six-run margins — and added that a win like that could be the start of a surge.

Manager Joe Girardi praised his team’s late effort in the face of a large deficit.

“You know you’ve got a lot of work to do,” Girardi said. “You know if you get a couple guys on, you get some guys coming up who can hit the ball out of the ballpark, and that’s what we did. We got a huge hit (from) Mac. Even the homer before kept us in the game, and then you get a huge one from Mac and a big one from Didi.”

Added McCann: “These wins are great. You don’t hit all game and then all of the sudden everybody puts together great at-bats. I just look at it like we’ve got to show up here every day and continue to put W’s on the board. And we’ve got three months to get this done.”

New York Sports