Following up his strong start against the Texas Rangers, Hiroki Kuroda was brilliant once again, limiting the Red Sox to one run in eight innings of work. He held the opposition to just four hits, one being an Adrian Gonzalez home run, while striking out four. It was the 13th high quality start of the season for Kuroda, who has been arguably the Yankees' best pitcher this year. All this guy does is go out and shut down the competition. He probably won't win the fancy pitcher award at the end of the season, but his name will likely be among those contending.
Rafael Soriano came on to untuck for the 31st time to finish the game. He allowed a hit before getting Dustin Pedroia to ground into a double play and striking out Adrian Gonzalez to end it. Just another guy who has exceeded expectations this year. For all the injuries and everything else, this team has been amazingly fun to watch.
The offense was led by a 3-4 night from Derek Jeter and two home runs off the bat of Ichiro Suzuki. Ichiro's first homer landed in the second deck in right field and his second earned him his first curtain call as a Yankee. Robinson Cano's 0-16 slump was snapped by a single off Josh Beckett in the 5th inning.
In a dramatic turn of events, good base running on the part of the Yankees led to a run on a wild pitch by Beckett. Jeter and Nick Swisher pulled off a double steal that temporarily erased the painful memories of all the failure we've seen on the bases this season. The Yankees certainly had more opportunities to score than they took advantage of, loading the bases on more than one occasion, but didn't get the hits that have seemingly been falling for them recently. Their RISP luck has definitely turned around since the beginning of the year, but tonight was not an example.
The Yankees travel to the Windy City tomorrow where Freddy Garcia will head to the hill against Gavin Floyd and the White Sox at 8:10 p.m.