Shift this! Teixeira blast rallies Yankees past Orioles 8-5
Mark Teixeira has been hacking both at the plate and from a cough which has lasted as long as his slump. But, last night was what he hopes to be a turning point. Teixeira beat a modified shift the only way he knows how. He blasted a go-ahead two-run home run in the top of the seventh inning propelling the New York Yankees past the first place Baltimore Orioles.
Teixeira was hearing the boos from the Camden Yards faithful, much like he did at Yankee Stadium in Sunday’s loss to the Seattle Mariners. Teixeira, who has been battling a chest infection and cough for almost a month now, combined with his annual poor start needed something to spark his season and the Yanks. “Obviously, I haven’t been getting the results I want,” Teixeira said. “I’ve just been battling, and tonight was one of those nights where I got to see some results. It was a big win for us here.”
A big win indeed. The Yankees pulled themselves within 1.5 games of the AL East leading Orioles. The win, unfortunately came with some losses.
Starting pitcher Ivan Nova turned his ankle while making a fielding play. He stated “it feels really bad now.” Clay Rapada suffered from a viral infection and Raul Ibanez left the game in the ninth inning after taking a pitch to the right elbow. We also learned that David Robertson will be getting a MRI today as he’s been complaining of soreness in his left ribcage.
Nova was not pitching all that well last night as his night started off with a Xavier Avery double and scoring on J.J. Hardy‘s single. After a Nick Markakis force out, Adam Jones doubled in Hardy to give the Orioles a 2-0 lead.
Orioles starter Jason Hammel, who entered the game leading the Orioles in wins and ERA, was looking in control through his first three innings. The Yankees were able to get on the board in the top of the fourth. Back-to-back singles from Alex Rodriguez and Robinson Cano set the table for Teixeira, but he grounded out moving the runners to second and third. Nick Swisher doubled to tie the score at 2-2.
The Bombers took the lead in the top of the fifth on Curtis Granderson‘s team-leading 12th home run of the season. The lead was short lived.
Nova walked the lead off batter Robert Andino to begin the bottom of the fifth and Avery roped a run-scoring triple to right. After a visit to the mound from Yankees pitching coach Larry Rothchild, Nova left a pitch in Hardy’s wheelhouse and he put the Orioles back on top 5-3 with his 9th homer of the season.
The Yanks fought back in the top half of the sixth. Cano doubled, followed by walks to Teixeira and Swisher. Ibanez ripped a hot shot toward O’s first baseman Chris Davis, who got tied up and allowed the ball to get by him tying the score 5-5.
The Yankees kept on plugging in the seventh. Rodriguez singled to open the inning. Teixeira came to the plate with one out and dismantled a Luis Ayala pitch that stayed up in the zone quieting the boos for the time being and giving the Yanks the lead. They tacked on a run in the ninth on an Eric Chavez sac fly.
That brought in Rafael Soriano for the save opportunity. He was very effective and should have had a 1-2-3 inning, but Chavez made an error allowing Markakis aboard. Soriano didn’t let the fielding gaffe get to him as he got Jones to ground out to Chavez to give the Yanks an 8-5 victory. It was Soriano’s second save of the season.
- Derek Jeter took over sole possession of 16th place on the all-time hits list.
- Rodriguez moved into 13th place on the all-time runs scored list at 1,845.
- The last four Yankees’ saves have been earned by four different players (Mariano Rivera, Robertson, Boone Logan and Soriano).
CC Sabathia takes the hill looking to get the Yanks within a half game of the Orioles in the standings. Left-handed rookie Wei-Yin Chen will try to stay undefeated and pad the Orioles lead.
Check back later in the day to see how the Yankees can get by the slew of injuries they encountered last night.