NEW YORK – Without anything approaching his best command, Hiroki Kuroda held the Chicago White Sox to two runs over six innings on Saturday to earn his ninth win of the season in a 5-3 victory for the New York Yankees.
Before 47,594 at Yankee Stadium, Kuroda had trouble locating his fastball for most of the game, while his command of his splitter and slider came and went. Despite that, he held the White Sox to just five hits and two walks, while striking out six.
“My condition wasn’t that good,” Kuroda said. “I was determined not to give in. On a day that was tough from a physical standpoint, it is big to be able to get a win. If I can keep pitching tough like this, it stands to reason that the team will have a chance to win.”
Kuroda, who was working on extra rest, surrendered a second-inning run when he gave up back-to-back, no-out doubles to Conor Gillaspie and Alexei Ramirez.
The Yankees tied it in the home half against 29-year-old rookie Scott Carroll (5-8) on a walk, an error, a bunt single and a double play grounder.
They took the lead in the fourth on a two-run double by Martin Prado.
Yankees skipper Joe Girardi said he would do what he could to keep Kuroda fresh in the waning days of the season after the 40-year-old faded badly down the stretch in 2013. This year, Kuroda is the only Yankees starter to remain in the rotation since the start of the season.
“He’s a guy that we’ve tried to make sure he gets the extra days when we can,” Girardi said. “We gave him two the last time and one extra one this time and he’ll go normal rest, but we need him down the stretch. He’s got the most experience out there and he’s been pitching well.”
Ichiro Suzuki was 1-for-3 in the win.
Indians 3, Astros 2
In Cleveland, Jose Ramirez’s ninth-inning single lifted the Indians over Houston.
Mariners 7, Red Sox 3
In Boston, Dustin Ackley’s three-run homer capped a seven-run fourth inning that carried Seattle.
Athletics 2, Angels 1
In Oakland, Coco Crisp scored the go-ahead run on Joe Smith’s wild pitch with two outs in the eighth inning, and the A’s moved into a first-place tie atop the AL West.
Royals 6, Rangers 3
In Arlington, Texas, Jeremy Guthrie gave up a home run on his first pitch and not much else.
Twins 12, Tigers 4 (1st)
Tigers 8, Twins 6 (2nd)
In Minneapolis, Justin Verlander labored into the sixth inning, Nick Castellanos had two RBIs and Detroit salvaged a doubleheader split.
In the opener, Twins rookie Kennys Vargas drove in five runs and starter Yohan Pino struck out six in five innings.
Blue Jays 5, Rays 4 (10)
In Toronto, Jose Reyes singled home the winning run with two outs in the 10th inning.
Munenori Kawasaki finished hitless in four at-bats.
Nationals 6, Giants 2
In Washington, Jordan Zimmermann pitched eight solid innings, Asdrubal Cabrera homered and the Nationals once again beat Tim Lincecum.
Dodgers 7, Mets 4
In Los Angeles, Adrian Gonzalez tied a season best with five RBIs, including a go-ahead, three-run homer.
Pirates 10, Brewers 2
In Milwaukee, Pedro Alvarez homered twice to break out of a 5-for-34 slump.
Diamondbacks 5, Padres 2
In Phoenix, Didi Gregorius hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning after Arizona blew the lead in the top half.
Cardinals 6, Phillies 5 (12)
In Philadelphia, Matt Carpenter hit a sacrifice fly in the 12th inning.
Reds 1, Braves 0
In Cincinnati, Mike Leake pitched into the seventh inning and boosted the Reds’ struggling offense by hitting a double and scoring the only run.
Rockies 5, Marlins 4 (13)
In Denver, Corey Dickerson’s single to right in the 13th inning scored Nolan Arenado to lift Colorado over Miami.
Cubs 7, Orioles 2
In Chicago, Chris Coghlan finally solved Bud Norris with a bases-loaded triple, leading the Cubs over Baltimore.