Now, that’s a way to end a series.
After dropping last night’s game, the Yankees were looking to rebound and salvage a split with the Rangers. Lucky for them, they had their ace on the mound and he pitched like one. And that’s not to take anything away from the other guys in the rotation who have actually been pitching well enough to win lately but who have unfortunately been victimized by their offense’s lack of scoring.
Today, two runs were plenty for Hiroki Kuroda who held the Rangers to six hits (all singles) in seven innings of work. He struck out three and walked one batter in one pitches. Truthfully, one run would have been enough for Kuroda.
The hitting star of the day for the Yankees was Austin Romine who finished the day 3-4 with two doubles. It was the first three-hit game of his career. Eduardo Nunez and Brent Lillibridge knocked in a run each and the Yankees scored both runs against Derek Holland who pitched 7.1 innings. He gave up eight hits, struck out two and walked one.
Mariano Rivera, was honored before the game in a ceremony that paid tribute to his long career. He was given custom New York Yankee cowboy boots and a cowboy hat. Both Nolan Ryan and former teammate and bullpen partner John Wetteland participated.
Rivera came in for the ninth inning and got Nelson Cruz to fly out to center, gave up a single to Adrian Beltre, got A.J. Pierzynski to ground into a force play – Beltre was called out at second – and ended the game by inducing a ground out by Mitch Moreland.
Ho hum. Rivera picked up his 33rd save in 35 tries.