Yankees defeat Reds in first game of series

CINCINNATI (AP) - Alex Rodriguez started New York's four-run first inning with an RBI single, and rookie Ivan Nova handled the NL's most prolific offense for eight innings, leading the Yankees to a 5-3 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Monday night.

The Yankees have won nine of 11, moving a season-best 13 games over .500 at 42-29. Their high-powered offense has led the way. 

New York started fast against left-hander Travis Wood (5-5), who made an unexpected start. Originally scheduled to pitch on Tuesday, he was moved up a day when Johnny Cueto showed up with a stiff neck.

Nova (7-4) won his third straight start, allowing a run and four singles without walking a batter.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)