The New York Yankees defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers in the first game of a day-night doubleheader today. Yankees starter Hiroki Kuroda got the win against his former team and had another good start, going into the seventh inning, giving up only two runs.
The only thing that went wrong today is that the Yankees might have used a few too many pitchers than they would have liked, especially because they have to play another game in just a few hours. Kuroda let up two runs in the seventh and exited with two outs and men on first and second. Shawn Kelley then replaced Kuroda and proceeded to strike out Nick Punto to end the inning with the Yankees up three to two.
The Yankees ended up scoring three more runs in the bottom of the seventh and thought the game would be in cruise control. Preston Claiborne, who strikes out almost everyone he faces, came into the game in the eighth with ending the game in mind. That didn’t happen though, as Hanley Ramirez smoked a laser off the top of the wall in left that bounced over for a two-run homer. David Robertson then replaced Claiborne as the game was now in a hold situation. Robertson walked the first two batters he faced but closed out the inning without any more damage.
Closer Mariano Rivera came in in the ninth as usual and only needed 10 pitches to get his 25th save out of 26 opportunities. He got Jerry Hairston to fly out to center with one pitch, and then struck out Punto swinging and young phenom Yasiel Puig looking. The whole Dodger bench was at the top of the dugout to see the final at-bat between Puig and Rivera as it was one of the most intriguing matchups imaginable in baseball today. In the end, old reliable came through to get the W for the Yanks. Because of Mariano’s low pitch count, he may be available for the night game.