One of the most highly anticipated inter-league series this season has already lived up to expectations. CC Sabathia limited Los Angeles to one run over eight innings as the Yankees topped the Dodgers, 2-1, Friday night at Dodger Stadium.
The story going into the game was Dodgers manager Joe Torre facing the team he managed for 12 seasons. During his time in New York, Torre won 1,173 games and led the Yankees to six AL pennants and four World Series championships.
By the time the game ended, however, Sabathia (9-3) was the story. He held Los Angeles to one run on four hits with seven strikeouts and three walks over eight innings. Sabathia won his fourth consecutive start and improved to 4-1 in inter-league games with the Yankees. Mariano Rivera struck out the side in the ninth for his 17th save.
Vincente Padilla (1-2) pitched effectively but was the hard-luck loser. In seven innings, he allowed two runs on six hits with seven strikeouts and one walk.
Alex Rodriguez provided the winning margin in the top of the sixth. With the game tied at one and one out, Rodriguez hit his 10th home run of the season over the left field wall to give New York a 2-1 advantage. Rodriguez entered the game hitting just .145 (8-55) in his career against Los Angeles.
Los Angeles scored early off Sabathia. Rafael Furcal led off the bottom of the first with a walk. After moving to third on a stolen base and groundout, he scored on Manny Ramirez’s two-out RBI single. Ramirez entered the game a career .321 (233-725) hitter against the Yankees.
The Yankees immediately answered in the top of the second. Rodriguez led off with a double and came around to score on Jorge Posada’s game-tying RBI single.
New York and Los Angeles will continue their three-game series on Saturday. A.J. Burnett (6-6, 4.83) will start for the Yankees, while the Dodgers will counter with Hiroki Kuroda (6-5, 3.06). First pitch is set for 7:10 p.m.