The New York Yankees may not want to have today’s off day considering how well things are going for them recently. Curtis Granderson‘s two-run homer put the Yankees back on top for good and Hiroki Kuroda continued his strong pitching as the Yankees swept the Atlanta Braves with a 3-2 victory last night at Turner Field.
Kuroda, now 6-6 on the season, was staked to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first. Derek Jeter led off the game with a double and scored on Alex Rodriguez‘s RBI single. It was the 1,923rd RBI of A-Rod’s career moving him into sole possession of eighth place ahead of Jimmie Foxx.
Kuroda would maintain the lead until the bottom of the fifth when he made the only true mistake of the night, allowing a two-run homer to Brian McCann which gave the Braves a temporary 2-1 lead. For the night, Kuroda tossed six innings allowing the two runs on nine hits and two walks. He struck out eight batters while wiggling out of trouble numerous times.
Tim Hudson, working on three extra days of rest, couldn’t hold the lead for more than two batters as Jeter singled to open the top half of the sixth and Granderson hit his 19th home run of the year. Hudson allowed only six hits and walked none while striking out eight. The homer was his and the Braves downfall.
After getting the lead back, Kuroda would work one more inning before giving way to the Yankees bullpen which was excellent once again.
The bullpen as a whole remains the most consistent aspect of this team. Boone Logan, pitching for the fourth time in five days, tossed a scoreless seventh inning dodging two walks. Cody Eppley worked in and out of trouble in the eighth by inducing a 6-4-3 double play with runners on first and third with one out. The Braves stranded 13 runners on the night.
Rafael Soriano came on in the ninth to finish the game off for his 11th save in 12 chances. Soriano and the rest of the bullpen will welcome the day off today to rest their arms after getting extensive work during the last six games.
The Yankees (37-25), winners of six straight and nine of eleven, are headed to Washington, D.C. to take on the NL East leading Nationals in a showdown of streaking first-place teams. The Yanks maintained their one-game lead over the Baltimore Orioles in the AL East and extended the gap between them and the Tampa Bay Rays to two games. The Nats, also winners of six straight, are now five games up on the Braves and New York Mets.
Tags: A-Rod Alex Rodriguez Atlanta Braves Baltimore Orioles Boone Logan Brian McCann Cody Eppley Curtis Granderson Derek Jeter Hiroki Kuroda New York Yankees Rafael Soriano Tampa Bay Rays Tim Hudson Washington Nationals Yankees