Texas pitcher Yu Darvish had a season-high 10 strikeouts and worked out of a couple of jams for the Rangers, delivering a 2-1 victory over the New York Yankees on Tuesday and getting the better of Japanese compatriot Hiroki Kuroda.
In only the seventh MLB matchup ever of Japanese starters, Darvish (3-0) walked a season-low two in 8 1-3 innings. The 10 strikeouts were the most by a Texas pitcher this season.
Ian Kinsler put Texas ahead to stay when he led off the first with a deep homer off Kuroda (1-3), who limited Texas to two runs over 6 2-3 innings.
Kuroda, who fell to 1-3, allowed five hits and two runs in 6 2/3 innings for the Yankees who won seven of their nine contests against the Rangers last year.
The marquee matchup featured Kuroda, with the fifth-most wins by a Japanese pitcher in Major League Baseball history, against Darvish who is perhaps the most-hyped pitching ace to come out of Japan.
This was the seventh matchup between Japanese starters and the first since 2010 when former Los Angeles Dodger Kuroda tossed eight shutout innings to defeat Hisanori Takahashi’s New York Mets 2-0.
ORIOLES 2, BLUE JAYS 1
In Baltimore, pitcher Tommy Hunter only allowed one runner past first base in six innings, steering Baltimore over Toronto.
Hunter (2-1) gave up a long homer to Eric Thames in the third, but was otherwise in command.
Baltimore’s Matt Wieters homered off the glove of Thames.
Pedro Strop pitched the ninth for his first career save. Baltimore’s usual closer, Jim Johnson, skipped the game with illness.
Toronto starter Henderson Alvarez (0-2) took the loss despite allowing only two runs over seven innings.
ATHLETICS 2, WHITE SOX 0
In Oakland, Tommy Milone outdueled Gavin Floyd, leading Oakland past Chicago.
Daric Barton drew a leadoff walk in the eighth and after a strikeout, Matt Thornton relieved Floyd (1-3). Kurt Suzuki doubled to left and Barton scored easily, then Eric Sogard added an RBI single as the A’s ended a 16-inning scoreless stretch.
The White Sox had their four-game winning streak snapped along with a six-game road winning streak.
Milone (3-1) matched Floyd all night until Oakland’s offense finally capitalized.
Tuesday’s other results:
‧ Mariners 7, Tigers 4
‧ Rays 5, Angels 0
‧ Indians 4, Royals 3
‧ Red Sox 11, Twins 2
AP, SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA
In Cincinnati, Mat Latos finally got his first win for his new team, pitching seven shutout innings to lead Cincinnati 9-2 over San Francisco.
Latos (1-2) came to the Reds in a trade from San Diego and acknowledged trying too hard to impress his new team. He was back on his game against the Giants, allowing only four singles.
Brandon Phillips hit a two-run homer in the first inning off Giants starter Matt Cain (1-1) after initially being called out on a foul tip. The umpires changed the call and gave him another swing.
NATIONALS 3, PADRES 1
Washington pitcher Gio Gonzalez ran his scoreless innings streak to 20, setting up the National League East-leading Nationals for a 3-1 win over the San Diego Padres on Tuesday.
Gonzalez (2-0) allowed two singles in six innings, and struck out six.
Chad Tracy hit a two-run single in the seventh to end the night for Padres starter Clayton Richard (1-2). Richard allowed two runs in 6 1-3 innings and walked five.
CUBS 3, CARDINALS 2
10 innings In Chicago, Alfonso Soriano hit a game-ending RBI single in the 10th inning as Chicago edged St. Louis, ending the Cardinals’ run of 13 consecutive winning series.