Ivan Nova pitched his second complete game shutout last night as the New York Yankees beat the San Francisco Giants 6-0 in a Major League Baseball game at Yankee Stadium.
Nova allowed six hits, struck out seven and walked one in notching his ninth win against five losses this season. He threw 108 pitches, including 73 strikes, in his third complete game this season.
In the race for the two American League play-off spots that go to non-division winners, the Tampa Bay Rays (85-69) and Cleveland Indians (85-70) hold the berths with the Texas Rangers (84-70) a half-game back followed by the Kansas City Royals, Yankees and Baltimore Orioles.
The Rays defeated the Orioles 5-1; the Indians topped the Houston Astros 4-0; and the Rangers beat the Royals 3-1 as the MLB regular season nears an end Sept. 29.
“Every time you go out there, you hope to have a good game,” said Nova, who recorded his second career shutout. “If you have a complete game, it’s a great feeling, especially for the time that we are in.”
Mark Reynolds scored on Ichiro Suzuki’s sacrifice fly, Brendan Ryan reached home on Alex Rodriguez’s ground-out and Robinson Cano hit a run-scoring single in the Yankees’ three-run third inning.
Eduardo Nunez hit a two-run homer in the fourth inning and Alfonso Soriano added a solo home run in the sixth.
The Yankees can sweep the Giants with a victory today.
“If we play like we played last night and today, then we can win the rest of our games,” Soriano said yesterday.
Ryan Vogelsong (3-6) gave up five runs on five hits with one strikeout in five innings for the loss.
In the National League, the Pittsburgh Pirates (89-66) and Cincinnati Reds (88-67) are in the top two wild-card spots with the Washington Nationals (83-71) 4 ½ games back.