Twins 3, Yankees 0
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) _ Rich Robertson allowed baserunners in every inning, was hit on his pitching hand by a batted ball and admitted he struggled with his control.
But despite the adversity, he also pitched his second shutout of the season, a 3-0 victory for the Minnesota Twins over the New York Yankees, stopping the Yankees’ five-game winning streak.
The Twins had lost three straight, including two shutouts, to lowly Detroit until Robertson pulled off his tightrope act against the Yankees, who were coming off a four-game series sweep at Cleveland.
``Got to chalk that one up to a lot of luck,″ said Robertson (3-8). ``A lot of times it’s better to be lucky.″
The Twins made their luck with some fancy fielding. Paul Molitor and Rick Meares each stopped rallies with diving stops of hard-hit ground balls. Meares also caught a line drive by Ruben Sierra. When Robertson was hit by a batted ball, it bounced right to Meares, who started a double play.
``Sometimes you got to help yourself to get a break,″ Twins manager Tom Kelly said. ``It goes hand-in-hand.″
``No question we were sky-high leaving Cleveland,″ said Yankees manager Joe Torre, who came to the Metrodome in the eighth inning after attending his brother’s funeral in New York. ``We couldn’t string any hits together, we just didn’t have it going offensively.″
Robertson (3-8) won for the third time in four decisions. The left-hander allowed eight hits, struck out four and walked three.
Robertson, whose four complete games leads the Twins and is half of the team’s total of eight, did not allow a runner past second.
``I struggled out there at times,″ Robertson said. ``The defense made I don’t know how many great plays. It seemed like every break went our way.″
Andy Pettitte (11-4) gave up three runs, two earned, on six hits in 5 1-3 innings, as he failed to become the American League’s first 12-game winner.
He was pitching for the first time in eight days after experiencing stiffness in his left elbow.
``I felt I could go out there and keep us in the game, so I didn’t worry about it,″ the lefthander said. ``It’s a muscle thing, and I just have to throw through it.″
The Twins took a 1-0 lead with two outs in the third on a single by Chuck Knoblauch and a double by Meares.
Pettitte’s mistake helped the Twins take a 2-0 lead in the fifth. With two outs, Knoblauch walked, stole second without a throw and scored when Pettitte threw Meares’ slow bouncer past first baseman Tino Martinez.
The Twins made it 3-0 on Dave Hollins’ RBI double in the sixth. He knocked in Marty Cordova, who singled to extend his hitting streak to 18 games.
Notes: The Twins called up pitcher Dan Serafini from Salt Lake (AAA), and sent down pitcher Mike Milchin to Salt Lake. ... Dave Hollins had two hits, two walks and an RBI in four plate appearances. ... Cordova’s hitting streak is the longest of his career. ... Torre said he tried to make it to Minnesota in time for Monday’s game, but his plane was delayed at LaGuardia Airport. Bench coach Don Zimmer handled managerial duties for the second straight game. ... With two singles, Jim Leyritz now has 10 multihit games.