A-Rod benched for a third straight game, sits vs LHP

HOUSTON (AP) Alex Rodriguez was out of the lineup for a third straight game Monday night against the Houston Astros as he remains mired in a slump.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Astros left-hander Dallas Keuchel has been tough on Rodriguez, but the decision was more to keep Carlos Beltran in the lineup. Beltran has hit .305 this season with 21 home runs and 62 RBIs entering Monday.

Rodriguez came into Monday 4 for 31 with one home run in July and batting .206 this season with nine home runs and 29 RBIs. He's been a regular in the lineup against left-handers and had played more against righties since the All-Star break.

Girardi says Rodriguez's ''time's going to come,'' and Rodriguez says he is ''optimistic about the future.'' Rodriguez says he thinks he has fixed a mechanical flaw that hurt him over the first two months of the season.