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Kuroda weathers the storm for Yankees

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Hiroki Kuroda [2]

In his final start before the All-Star break, Hiroki Kuroda finished off a compelling case that he should have been chosen for the American League’s pitching staff. In a start that could have gone wrong in several ways, Kuroda delivered five scoreless innings for a 2-0 Yankees win against the Twins. Despite a 73-minute rain delay, Kuroda came back out to pitch the fifth inning. Despite allowing eight base runners, he kept Minnesota off the board. Kuroda’s ERA is down to 2.65, the lowest in the American League. The Yankees offense, which had just one hit before the fourth-inning delay, finally scored in the fifth. Brett Gardner had the go-ahead hit, then he scored on a two-out single by Robinson Cano. The Yankees bullpen made that narrow lead hold up, getting three pivotal strikeouts from Boone Logan in the seventh — he had to face both Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau with two on — and getting a scoreless ninth from Mariano Rivera, who now has 30 saves.

Associated Press photo