Scoring runs has been a problem for the Yankees all season long, and the odds were not on their side coming into Monday night as they had to face Max Scherzer, the first of three former Cy Young winners they'll see over the next three day. The Yankees only scored two runs, but it was enough for them to down the Detroit Tigers, 2-1, in a close pitchers' duel at Yankee Stadium.
The Yankees got their runs early against Scherzer giving starter Brandon McCarthy a 2-0 lead in the 3rd inning. Ichiro Suzuki, Brett Gardner, and Derek Jeter opened the bottom of the 3rd with three straight singles to load the bases, then a batter later, Jacoby Ellsbury hit a sac-fly to center field, scoring Ichiro for the game's first run. Carlos Beltran lined out to second, then Brian McCann hit an RBI single into right field that made it a 2-0 game.
Detroit didn't grab a run back until Ian Kinsler put them on the board with an RBI single in the 5th inning off of McCarthy to make it a 2-1 game.
That was the only run the Tigers were able to get off of McCarthy, and the rest of the pitching staff for that matter, and it wasn't even earned -- a throwing error by Martin Prado at third base put the scoring running on. McCarthy ran into danger in the 3rd inning, loading the bases with just one out, but he got out of it unharmed by striking out the next two hitters to end the inning.
He gave up five hits, walked two, and struck out eight on 116 pitches in 5.2 innings, picking up his 4th win since joining the Yankees in early July.
Scherzer was good, too, for the Tigers, but he wasn't good enough to beat McCarthy and the Yankees, giving up the two runs in nine hits, with three walks and four strikeouts in seven innings, throwing 115 pitches.
The game was left in the hands of the bullpen when Joe Girardi, who captured his 700th career win as a manager in this game, pulled McCarthy with two outs in the 6th. Matt Thornton needed three pitches to get the final out of the 6th. Adam Warren gave up just a single in a scoreless 7th inning, ahead of Shawn Kelley who one-upped that with a three up, three down 8th.
All of that leading up to David Robertson, who making going for the save in the third straight game for the Yankees. The right-hander needed just 11 pitches in the 9th, striking out the final two batters of the game to lock down his 30th save of the season.
The parade of Cy Youngs continues on Tuesday night, when David Price makes his Tigers debut, facing off with Hiroki Kuroda at 7:05 p.m. ET.