Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 6/13/12
Michigan-news-february

ATLANTA -- Curtis Granderson followed Brian McCann's fifth-inning two-run home with his own two-run homer in the sixth, and the Yankees held on from that point to beat the Braves 3-2, giving New York a three-game sweep.

The last time the Yankees played at Turner Field -- June 23-25, 2009 -- they took two out of three from the Braves and went on to win their 27th Word Series championship. Manager Joe Girardi, speaking earlier in this series, called it the turning point of that season.

Girardi doesn't mind relying on home runs to win.

"I don't think about it," he said. "Everyone else talks about it and I don't really care. I don't care how we score runs because home runs are actually hits."

Hiroki Kuroda (6-6), allowed a hit in all six innings he pitched, and loaded the bases in the second, but was undamaged until the fifth, when Martin Prado led off with a single to center and McCann drove him in with his eighth homer of the season.

Tim Hudson (4-3) has been the Braves stopper this year, taking the ball five previous times after a Braves loss, winning three, losing one and earning one no decision. He was making his first start since throwing a complete game shutout against the Marlins on June 5; his scheduled start last Sunday versus the Blue Jays had been scrubbed when he developed pain from bone spurs in his left ankle.

That he wasn't pitching like himself was evident by the eight strikeouts in his pitching line; Hudson's best pitch, his sinker, is supposed to produce ground-ball outs.

"I threw a pitch for him right there for a homer," Hudson said of the cutter to Granderson. "It was a cutter that didn't cut. It cut the middle of the plate in half."

Kuroda overcame his own left foot injury -- he was hit by a Daniel Murphy line drive in the seventh inning of his last start, a 9-1 win over the Mets last Friday.

"As soon as I got on the mound," he said, "I forgot about my ankle."

Derek Jeter stroked the second pitch of the game to center field for a double, went to third on Granderson's groundout and scored on Alex Rodriguez's single to center.

That was the extent of the scoring until McCann walloped a two-run home run in the fifth, giving the Braves a 2-1 lead.

Until then, Hudson and Kuroda had dodged unexpected rain showers and waited patiently as the Braves grounds crew groomed the mound repeatedly.

A huge black cloud literally hung over Turner Field from the second inning on, on what was supposed to be the only rain-free day of the three-game series. Thunder rumbled when the Braves loaded the bases with one out in the second. However, Hudson, a good hitter, struck out, and Michael Bourn grounded out.

The Braves got a runner to third base in the second, third and fourth innings but couldn't cash in.

"I think we left a guy on base every inning," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "It's tough to pitch that way. To tell you the truth, you lose three games and you feel like you played two real good games and 7.1 of another one that you feel pretty good about. And we got nothing out of them."

NOTES: Yankees left-hander Andy Pettitte threw his usual bullpen session and had no issues at all after snaring a line drive with his bare hand in his last start. ... Rafael Soriano's save for the Yankees in Tuesday's game was the 100th of his career. He earned 39 of those as a reliever for the Braves from 2007-09. ... New York left-hander CC Sabathia has now pitched 19 consecutive innings without giving up a home run. ... Yankees manager Joe Girardi said before the game that he would like "at some point" to have Russell Martin behind the plate for a Sabathia start. Chris Stewart caught Sabathia again Tuesday. ... Girardi confirmed that reliever David Robertson (strained left oblique) will be ready to be activated Friday, quipping, "Unless he takes a box downstairs, we're OK." ... Braves second baseman Dan Uggla played in his 1,000th career game. ... Atlanta first baseman Freddie Freeman was out of the lineup to allow the swelling on his bruised left index finger and thumb to go down. The Braves have an off day Thursday, and manager Fredi Gonzalez hopes having two solid days off will help. Freeman hasn't been able to grip his bat properly because of the pain and swelling, and it's affecting his offense. ... Braves left-hander Eric O'Flaherty woke up Monday morning with a sore left elbow and has not been available out of the bullpen. He's been taking anti-inflammatories, but Gonzalez thinks he may not be available for another day or two. ... The Braves called up right-hander Anthony Varvaro from Triple-A Gwinnett to provide a fresh arm for the taxed bullpen. Gonzalez and pitching coach Roger McDowell are trying to get by without having to put O'Flaherty on the disabled list. Right-hander Cory Gearrin was optioned back to Gwinnett to make room. ... Braves assistant trainer Jim Lovell has been chosen to be on the National League's staff for the All-Star Game.

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