Maybe Ivan Nova will turn out to be more than just a 'placeholder' in the New York Yankees' pitching rotation after all. Nova pitched 7.1 innings of two-hit baseball Friday, the longest outing of his major-league career, as the Yankees defeated the Texas Rangers, 4-1.
Nova (3-2) surrendered only an unearned run in the eighth inning. Rafael Soriano got the final two outs in the eighth inning and Mariano Rivera finished for his 12th save.
The Yankees had lost three straight games prior to starting the series against the Rangers, and have been struggling offensively. Curtis Granderson provided all the offense Nova, 24, needed Friday with a pair of home runs and three RBI. The Yankees held a 3-0 lead after just two innings, and Nova held on from there.
The Yankees and Rangers play again Saturday night (8:05 p.m.). New York will send veteran Bartolo Colon (2-1) to the mound, while Texas will pitch Derek Holland (3-1).
|Final - 5.6.2011||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|New York Yankees||2||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||4||5||1|
|WP: Ivan Nova (3 - 2)
SV: Mariano Rivera (12)
LP: Matt Harrison (3 - 4)