Pettitte Passes Whitey Ford as Yankees’ Strikeout Leader in Win

Andy Pettitte passed Hall of Fame pitcher Whitey Ford as the New York Yankees’ career strikeout leader, pushing his total to 1,958 in the Yankees’ 10-4 comeback win against the Minnesota Twins.

Pettitte, a 41-year-old left-hander, entered last night’s game one strikeout shy of Ford’s franchise record, set in 1963, and recorded two over five innings in Minneapolis.

Pettitte was taken out with no outs in the bottom of the sixth inning after allowing a solo home run to Chris Parmelee that put the Twins ahead 4-3. Pettitte didn’t factor in the decision, as the Yankees rallied for seven runs over the final two innings, and remains winless in his past four starts.

“It makes it a lot easier to swallow that we were able to come back and win,” Pettitte told reporters. “We’ve been scuffling and we needed a win. Hopefully we can build on this.”

The New York Mets beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-4 as Andrew Brown delivered a two-run single with two outs in the bottom of the 13th inning. The Mets pulled out the victory after allowing a solo home run to Cody Ross in the top of the 13th and leaving 20 runners on base.

Pettitte has 2,386 career strikeouts with the Yankees and Houston Astros, ranking 41st in Major League Baseball history and first among active pitchers. Teammate CC Sabathia is second among active major league pitchers with 2,311 strikeouts, including 918 over five seasons with the Yankees.

Robinson Cano went 3-for-4 with two home runs and a double for New York, which ended a five-game losing streak. The win was Joe Girardi’s 600th as the Yankees’ manager.

“It’s definitely a much better feeling than we’ve had in some time,” Girardi told reporters.

Harper Returns

The Washington Nationals beat the Milwaukee Brewers 10-5 yesterday as outfielder Bryce Harper hit a home run in his first at-bat off the disabled list after missing 31 games with an inflamed left knee. Jayson Werth had five runs batted in for Washington and starting pitcher Jordan Zimmerman allowed four runs in six innings to pick up his 12th win of the season and tie Detroit’s Max Scherzer for the major league lead.

Zimmerman also went 3-for-3 at the plate, and scored twice.

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