New York — The New York Yankees lost the AL championship series opener and their captain when Derek Jeter broke his left ankle just after Delmon Young doubled home the go-ahead run in the 12th inning of the Detroit Tigers' thrilling, excruciating, bizarre 6-4 victory Saturday night.
Three innings after Raul Ibanez sent the 47,122 in Yankee Stadium into a frenzy with a tying two-run homer, the durable New York shortstop silenced the crowd when he went down and didn't get up after making a diving stop on Jhonny Peralta's grounder in the 12th inning.
From delirium to dread in a flash.
Jeter dived to his left for the sharp grounder and winced in pain as he flipped the ball toward second base. He then rolled onto his stomach, and a collective gasp was heard when he stayed down.
Jeter remained on his side, rolling slightly, as trainer Steve Donahue and manager Joe Girardi checked him out. He was helped up, and he put an arm around Girardi and Donahue. They coaxed him off the field with Jeter not moving his left leg as chants of "Derek Jeter!" rang out.
Detroit was coasting to a 4-0 win before the Yankees rocked Tigers closer Jose Valverde in the ninth.
Ichiro Suzuki started the comeback with a two-run homer with one out, and the 40-year-old Ibanez hit another two-run drive with two outs. Three nights earlier, Ibanez hit a tying home run in the ninth against Baltimore in Game 3 of the division series and another homer in the 12th to win it.
Young's one-out double off David Phelps, which followed a leadoff walk by Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera, sliced in right and eluded Nick Swisher, who appeared ready to dive but couldn't get his glove out when he realized the ball was closer to him than he had thought.
Young drove in three runs, hitting an RBI single in a two-run sixth against Andy Pettitte, and a solo homer in the eighth against Derek Lowe.
Tigers rookie Avisail Garcia singled in a run against Boone Logan, and Andy Dirks added an RBI single in the 12th on a comebacker that glanced off Phelps' pitching hand.
Drew Smyly, who had started warming up in the third when starter Doug Fister took a line drive off his right wrist, got the win by pitching two scoreless innings.
"You can see the disappointment in his face," Girardi said of Jeter after the Yankees' 6-4 loss.
Girardi said the injury won't jeopardize Jeter's career. But the recovery will be about three months.
If the Yankees are going to go deep in the postseason they will have to do it without their durable star for the first time in 16 years. The Yankees will activate Eduardo Nunez before tonight's game.
In Game 2 tonight, New York starts Hiroki Kuroda, pitching on three days' rest for the first time in his big league career. Detroit sends Anibal Sanchez to the mound.
Twenty-five of 42 previous Game 1 winners have gone on to take the AL pennant.