Though Dennis Sarfate decided to make it interesting in the ninth by allowing three earned runs, George Sherrill came in to get the final out (after allowing an RBI double to Mark Teixeira, charged to Sarfate) and the Orioles secured their second straight win over the Yankees.
Nick Markakis was 3-for-3 with a double, a homer and three RBIs to lead the offense, and Koji Uehara pitched five strong innings in his debut to keep the Yanks in check until late.
Uehara's five innings were good, and he gets the win. He walked Derek Jeter to lead off the game, but didn't walk anyone else and allowed just five hits. He also didn't get any strikeouts. His pitches had good movememtn, but he seemed a little off now and then, as he sort of labored through 86 pitches (54 for strikes). He wasn't wild, and I think for now it's worth it to just chalk this up to some possible early butterflies. Koji was just fine. A five or six inning pitcher is what we're looking at, and he turned this one over to the bullpen as best he could.
About the bullpen
Matt Albers had a rough sixth inning, but then Danys Baez was flat-out smoking for two perfect innings, throwing 14 of 20 pitches for strikes. He mowed down the six batters he faced. Sarfate was all over the damn place in his two-thirds of an inning before Sherrill came in to close it out. Sarfate threw just nine of 20 pitches for strikes, gave up the three earned on a hit and two walks, and just looked horrible out there. I'll go with "big deal, he'll get past it," but his lack of command is pretty bad and could really hurt him. If he isn't really on point, it can get very ugly out there. He's the type of guy who can dominate, but there's also going to be these days where he just totally screws the pooch.
About the offense
17 runs in two games. They destroyed Chien-Ming Wang (3.2 IP, 9 H, 7 ER, 3 BB). The O's also walked six times to just two strikeouts. Through two games, the team has a 7-to-1 BB-to-K ratio. That is huge. What they're doing now is obviously not sustainable to that degree, but there's absolutely more of an emphasis on plate discipline. Dave Trembley said tonight that Terry Crowley was preaching patience this spring. It looks like it's paying off.
About the defense
Aubrey Huff made a couple of neat plays, lumbering around once toward the mound to grab a pop-up that seemed like it probably should've been someone else's ball, and then backpedaling forever to catch one down the line late in the game, which caused Adam Jones to chuckle heartily. This also sent Gary Thorne into an epic cackle, and at the end he went, "That's CLASSIC!"
Speaking of classic...
Gary Thorne is hilarious and very, very white
MASN PBP man Gary Thorne had some classic, classic stuff tonight, but the biggest one came when they were talking about the stadium's new sound system. He began by extolling the virtures of the "great rock n' roll" that they had been playing earlier, and then it snowballed.
Thorne then went on to discuss the "great rock n' roll" of The Buttercups. While the world wondered who in the hell The Buttercups are, Thorne remembered (read: was told in his earpiece) that the band he was thinking of was The Foundations, of course.
He then went on to sing their famous song, "Fill Me Up Buttercup." "Why don't you fill me up, buttercup?" he sang.
Now, if you're somehow unfamiliar with this song in this long since post-There's Something About Mary world, it is called "Build Me Up Buttercup." The lyric is, "Why do you build me up, buttercup?" It's a song about a floozy that F's with your, like, emotions, man.
It's not weird that he was so wrong, but hearing him be so enthusiastically wrong was just amazing. He could not have been older, lamer or whiter if he had spent time rehearsing how to be these things.
In short, we love you, Gary.
Eat it, Tex
Mark Teixeira was lustily booed every single time he came up to the plate. If you forgot where the Yanks were in the lineup and the camera wasn't on the batter, you knew it was Teixeira coming up. The 22,000-plus in attendance jeered the crap out of him once again. This is not going to stop. He is the most hated player in Baltimore.