Man, that starting pitching matchup was as good as advertised. Clayton Kershaw and Hiroki Kuroda traded zeroes for 7+ innings before giving way to the bullpen, which is when the Yankees finally made their move. Let’s recap the 3-0 win:
- Cy Kuroda: The Yankees have seven shutout wins as a team this year, and Kuroda has started five (!) of them. The staff ace held the Dodgers to five singles and one walk in seven innings, striking out eight and throwing a first pitch strike to 20 of 25 (!!) batters. He even showed some rare emotion by pumping his fist and screaming after striking out Skip Schumaker to end the seventh with men on first and second. Kuroda was marvelous yet again. What a stud this guy is.
- Cy Kershaw: The guy on other team was pretty great too. Kershaw held the Bombers to five scattered singles in eight innings, but for whatever reason he was taken out of the game with his pitch count at 97. He stayed in to bunt in the bottom of the eighth but wasn’t allowed to pitch the top of the ninth, and it came back to bite them. Kershaw was great, but Kuroda & Co. outlasted him.
- The Check Swing That Turned The Season Around?: Lyle Overbay struck out against lefty Paco Rodriguez with two outs and two on in the ninth, swinging feebly at three sliders. Except he wasn’t out, the third base ump said he checked his swing on the third strike when the replays showed he did not. The at-bat continued and one pitch later, Overbay dumped a run-scoring single into center. The Yankees got a huge break and took advantage. That was great to see. The single gave them a 1-0 lead in the ninth.
- Leftovers: The Yankees tacked on two runs when Mark Ellis and Yasiel Puig had a little communication problem in right field, resulting in Jayson Nix‘s pop fly being dropped and two big insurance runs crossing the plate … props to Derek Jeter for the leadoff walk to start the go-ahead rally. He was lifted for a pinch-runner, which never happens … Boone Logan faced the top and the heart of the order in the eighth, but pitched around a single and an intentional walk to keep it scoreless … Alfonso Soriano, Vernon Wells, Brent Lillibridge, Chris Stewart, and Melky Mesa had the other singles while pinch-hitter Ichiro Suzuki was walked intentionally … CC Sabathia was on deck when Stewart made the final out of the ninth. That would have been fun.
MLB.com has the box score and video highlights, FanGraphs some other stats, and ESPN the updated standings. The Yankees are seven back in the AL East and three back of the second wildcard in the loss column. It remains doable. Following Thursday’s off-day, the team will be in San Diego to open a three-game weekend series against the Padres on Friday night. CC Sabathia and Andrew Cashner is the pitching matchup.