Yankees 3, Orioles 2: Foiled by Freddy

BALTIMORE, MD - AUGUST 29: Alfredo Simon #55 of the Baltimore Orioles pitches against the New York Yankees at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on August 29, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

The Orioles wasted a solid outing from starting pitcher Alfredo Simon, managing just three hits against Freddy Garcia and his band of relievers. They did avoid a shutout by making two of those three hits home runs, but it just wasn't enough. 

The Yankees are of course a much tougher offense than the one Simon faced last week in Minnesota, and it was evident in the very first inning. After retiring Brett Gardner on a smash hit that Simon just got his glove on, Simon walked Curtis Granderson (after starting the at bat 0-2) and gave up a long double to the right field corner to Mark Teixeira. Granderson scored easily from first. 

After that, though, Simon retired nine straight Yankees before Robinson Cano singled with one out in the fourth inning. That brought Nick Swisher to the plate, who hit the first ball he saw to right field for his 21st home run of the year. The 3-0 deficit seemed hopeless given the way the Orioles batters were flailing against Freddy Garcia. 

Simon pitched three more innings and allowed just two more base runners, and finished with a pitching line of 7 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 6 K. That's a line I'll take against a team like the Yankees any time. Mike Gonzalez came on in relief and pitched two innings, allowing just one hit.  Coming into tonight's game the Yankees were averaging 5.49 runs per game, tops in the American League. For the Orioles to hold them to three using just two pitchers is impressive. It's just a shame the offense couldn't help them out. 

As I mentioned, the Orioles had just three hits tonight. The first was a double from Adam Jones with two outs in the first inning. The other two were solo home runs, one each from Mark Reynolds (his 31st) and J.J. Hardy (26). Garcia allowed the first two hits and Hardy's home run was hit off of reliever David Robertson

With that the Orioles earn a split with the Yankees this series. Their season record against them is 3-11. They'll face the Yankees four more times next week to finish the season series. 

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