A three-city road trip of eight games that ending with a twinbill in Cleveland on Monday is on the verge of being the most surprising part of a stunning first six weeks for the Yankees. Thanks to Hiroki Kuroda's pitching and home runs by Robinson Cano and Vernon Wells the Yankees swept three games from the Royals with a 4-2 victory Sunday that was witnessed by 29,515 at Kauffman Stadium. After losing the first of three games in Denver to the Rockies the Yankees have won five straight and will leave Cleveland with a winning record on a trip that appeared tricky at the outset. While Joe Girardi has been forced to play Jayson Nix and Chris Nelson at short and third regularly and Chris Stewart, a career backup, behind the plate, the Yankees' pitching has glossed over the lack of punch from a lineup that is missing Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, Curtis Granderson, Mark Teixeira and Kevin Youkilis. Kuroda , who went 7 2/3 innings, allowing two runs and six hits, won for the third time in four decisions and is 5-2. In a rare show of protest Kuroda barked at plate umpire Laz Diaz on the way from the mound to the dugout after being replaced by David Robertson in the eighth inning. Mariano Rivera recorded the final three outs for his 15th save in 15 chances. Ervin Santana absorbed the loss and is 3-2. Brett Gardner's leadoff double in the fifth led to a run and the Yankees leading, 4-1. Gardner scored on Wells' single to left. Cano and Wells hit back-to-back homers in the third when the Yankees erased a 1-0 deficit and took a 3-1 lead. Stewart opened the inning with a single to left and scored on Cano's two-out homer to right. It was Cano's 10th homer.
Kuroda gem, Cano, Wells homers lead Yankees past Royals
New York Post | May 12