Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Francisco Cervelli collected four hits and scored the decisive run on Brett Gardner's single in the top of the third inning, as the New York Yankees edged the Chicago White Sox, 2-1, in the rubber match of a three-game series at U.S. Cellular Field.
Marcus Thames homered in the second for New York, which had dropped four of its previous six road games. Thames now has three homers in his last two games and five in his last five games.
Yankees' right-hander Ivan Nova (1-0), making just his second major league start, limited the White Sox to one run and five hits over 5 2/3 innings to pick up his first career win. He struck out seven batters and walked one.
New York entered play tied atop the American League East standings with Tampa Bay. The Rays host Boston later Sunday.
Juan Pierre singled home Gordon Beckham in the fifth for the White Sox, who have lost nine of their last 14 games. Gavin Floyd (9-11) allowed two runs on seven hits and three walks in 6 2/3 innings to take the loss.
As the schedule continues to shorten, the White Sox still find themselves trailing first-place Minnesota by 4 1/2 games in the AL Central. The Twins were beaten by the Mariners in Seattle on Sunday.
Down by a run, Chicago loaded the bases in the sixth. Boone Logan replaced Nova with a runner on first and A.J. Pierzynski reached on an infield single.
Kerry Wood took over on the mound and issued a free pass to Alexei Ramirez, but the veteran right-hander got out of trouble by getting Mark Teahen on a grounder to first.
Joba Chamberlain tossed a scoreless eighth to protect New York's one-run lead and Mariano Rivera worked around a one-out walk in the ninth to earn his 27th save of the season.
Cervelli recorded his first career four-hit game...The Yankees improved to 8-1-1 in series against the AL Central this season...New York won the season series, 4-2...The White Sox retired Frank Thomas' No. 35 in a pre-game ceremony.