Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Gonzalez, Jones too much for Yanks as O's even series

The O's got a pair of RBIs -- including another homer -- from a red-hot Adam Jones and used a stellar seven-inning start from Miguel Gonzalez to top the Yankees, 4-3, in Tuesday's series-evening win.
Gonzalez (1-1) set a new career high with 10 strikeouts and held New York to just one run. The righty has pitched to a 1.42 ERA in his first two starts this season.
"He was incredible," catcher Caleb Joseph said. "We've been talking about the split-finger for a while now, trying to get it down. It showed up tonight, didn't it? He's great. He mixed all of his pitches there, really stayed in the count. The thing about Miggy is he's got a lot of weapons, and when he gets ahead, he's dangerous."
Yankees starter CC Sabathia went seven innings in the loss, with Mark Teixeira and Carlos Beltran driving in runs. New York closed the gap to one run on left fielder Alejandro De Aza's eighth-inning fielding error, but Zach Britton came on to record his second save of the year.
Baltimore chopped: Sabathia used to be a near-lock against the Birds, going 16-2 with a 2.74 ERA in 22 starts against them from 2001-11, but those fortunes have reversed. Since the start of the '12 season, Sabathia has endured seven consecutive winless starts at Camden Yards. The veteran permitted four runs and seven hits over seven innings, walking one and striking out seven in a 91-pitch effort. More >
"I think his luck is going to change," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "I'm going to take my chances if he's throwing the ball the way he's throwing, that the results are going to be better."
Gonzo is great: The righty retired 10 straight at one point and took a shutout into the sixth inning. Gonzalez allowed just four hits and a walk in the 108-pitch outing. More >
"He wasn't making any mistakes," Teixeira said. "He's got five pitches; not many guys have five pitches. When he was missing, he was missing out of the zone. He pitched really well. You have to give him credit."
No stopping Jones: The O's star center fielder keeps on rolling. Or maybe raking is more like it. Jones homered in the first inning and drove in a run in his next at-bat and is 11-for-17 with four homers, a double, eight runs and nine RBIs in five games at Camden Yards this season.
"He's one of the best hitters in the game," Sabathia said. "He got a two-seamer and put a good swing on it. I felt like we pitched him a little better after that, but he's hot, and there's nothing you can really do."
Nice shooting, Tex: Teixeira is enjoying a decent start to his season, smacking an RBI double off Gonzalez in the sixth and connecting with a deep fly ball in the eighth that De Aza dropped for a run-scoring error. Before the game, Girardi said that Teixeira's at-bats have been good and that "when we need a run driven in, he's provided it. That's why he's there."
"I've been facing him for seven years. You just face him and you just grind it out. The competition obviously, he's one of the best competitors in this game that we've had since I've been around. You just go out there and you've got to bring your best because he always will." -- Jones, on Sabathia.
"I mean, it's just being 34 years old. Four years ago, I probably could have made that play." -- Sabathia, on his second-inning fielding error.
When reliever Kevin Gausman was charged with two runs (one earned) on Tuesday, it marked the eighth straight game that the Orioles' bullpen permitted a run to open the season.
Joseph, who drove in a run in the fourth, hit his first career triple in the seventh inning. He scored on Everth Cabrera's sacrifice fly.
With the tying run on second base, Britton came on with two outs in the eighth, recording his first four-out save this season. The lefty also made a pair of great defensive plays, including a hustle play to cover first base and one in which he sprung off the mound for a ball in front of the plate.
"I'm not sure if two years ago he could have made those two plays," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said of Britton. "It's something every team stresses in the spring, but Zach really knew it's something that he can get. ... He's already made two or three plays that he wouldn't have made two or three years ago. You can tell he's very confident going after a ball now."
Yankees: Nathan Eovaldi has the ball for his second start of the season as the Yankees wrap up their three-game series with the Orioles on Wednesday at 7:05 p.m. ET. Eovaldi showcased high-octane stuff in his debut, hitting triple digits on the radar gun, but generated just three swings and misses out of 94 pitches.
Orioles: Baltimore will celebrate Jackie Robinson Day by hosting the Yankees in Wednesday's series finale. Righty Bud Norris will take the mound looking to bounce back from going just three innings in the O's home opener.

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