NEW YORK -- The talk of getting demoted existed for Michael Pineda but the right-hander was not thinking about it.
Instead his focus was on making the proper adjustments to give the New York Yankees a reason to keep starting him.
Pineda turned in a second straight effective outing by pitching a season-high seven innings and the New York Yankees defeated the Los Angeles Angels 6-3 Tuesday night at Yankee Stadium.
"I changed the angle of my arm because the slider cuts better when I have a lower angle on my arm," Pineda said through a translator. "That's one of the adjustments that I made."
The talk about a demotion intensified when Pineda was rocked for six runs and nine hits in 3 2/3 innings on May 28 at Tampa Bay. Instead of continuing to struggle, he has allowed four runs and 11 hits over 12 1/3 innings.
"That was never on my mind," Pineda said. "I was working hard on adjustments with the pitching coach and making sure that I executed. I was never worried. That's out of my hands."
Pineda allowed all three runs in a span of three batters in the fifth when he gave up an RBI single to Gregorio Petit and a two-run home run to Kole Calhoun on a first-pitch changeup. He did not let things deteriorate further as he quickly retired Mike Trout for the final out and rapidly finished the final two innings.
"That's encouraging because that's something that hasn't happened this year," New York manager Joe Girardi said. "We've seen it happen in the past. He did a good job giving us seven innings tonight and to be able to do that was nice."
It was his longest start since he had seven shutout innings in a no-decision July 4, 2015, against Tampa Bay. It also was the third time in four starts he allowed three runs or less.
"He was good," Angels designated hitter C.J. Cron said. "He was mixing his pitches well. He threw a hard slider that kind of kept us off balance and kept the ball down so that's always a recipe for success usually."
Pineda lowered his ERA to 6.14 by striking out four, issuing two walks and throwing 61 of 91 pitches for strikes. Several of his deliveries hit 95 mph or higher.
"It seemed like he had great rhythm on the mound and he was able to execute pitches," New York right fielder Carlos Beltran said. "He's a guy that has a lot of talent. If he executes, he's going to be able to get people out."
Pineda retired 12 of the first 15 hitters he faced and had the comfort of a 5-0 lead.
Beltran hit a two-run home run off David Huff (0-1) with one out in the first and Romine added an RBI single in the first. Rob Refsnyder lifted a sacrifice fly in the second and Starlin Castro homered for a 5-0 lead with one out in the third.
Alex Rodriguez added a seven-inning RBI single as the Yankees beat the Angels for the 14th time in the last 19 meetings and seventh straight time at home.
Dellin Betances struck out two in a perfect eighth. Andrew Miller pitched the ninth and notched his seventh save.
The Angels (26-32) lost for the 13th time in their last 16 visits to Yankees Stadium and were held to six hits or less for the 10th time in the last 12 meetings with New York. Trout was 0-for-3 with a walk while Pujols was 0-for-4 and committed one of two Los Angeles errors.
Huff (0-1) made his debut for Los Angeles and was tagged for five runs and eight hits in 3 2/3 innings.
"All around I think trying to get settled in was my biggest problem," Huff said.
NOTES: RHP Tim Lincecum allowed four runs (two earned) in five innings during his second rehab start for Triple-A Salt Lake on Tuesday. Lincecum will make another start with Salt Lake before joining the Angels. ... Yankees 1B Mark Teixeira said if he had surgery on the torn cartilage in his right knee it would have ended his season because the procedure requires a recovery of 4-to-6 months. ... The teams made a combined seven transactions prior to the game. New York purchased the contract of RHP Anthony Swarzak from Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, optioned RHP Luis Cessa to Triple-A and designated LHP Tyler Olson for assignment. The Angels placed RHP Joe Smith (hamstring) on the 15-day disabled list, purchased the contract of LHP David Huff from Triple-A Salt Lake, recalled RHP Mike Morin from Salt Lake and designated RHP Javy Guerra for assignment.