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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

O's bounce back to take two after dropping series opener to Yanks.

BALTIMORE, MD: After beginning the season taking 2 of 3 from the White Sox, the Orioles continued their home stand hosting the Yankees.  The Tuesday night series opener saw two lefties facing off.  Ron "Gator" Guidry for the Yankees and Scott McGregor for Baltimore.  The Orioles took an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third.  Kiko Garcia singled past the diving Willie Randolph to start the inning.  Garcia advanced to second as Guidry crossed up Munson with the passed ball.  Rick Dempsey followed with a walk.  It looked like the rally would die as Dauer lined to left and New York leftfielder Roy While doubled up Dempsey who strayed too far off first.  However, Al Brumby clutched up and lined a single up the middle to plate Garcia. 


The top of the fourth looked to be another quiet inning for McGregor as he retired the first two Yankee hitters.  "Sweet" Lou Piniella lined a shot that Belanger was only able to knock down.  Cliff Johnson then lined a double to left center with Piniella stopping at third.  Chambliss then went the other way with a base hit to left center, scoring Piniella and Johnson and giving New York a 2-1 lead.  Nettles followed that with a shot down the right field line extending the Yankee lead to 4-1.

The bottom of the sixth started promising for the Orioles.  Ken Singleton singled to left.  Doug DeCinces followed with a drive off the right center field wall as Singleton scored and DeCinces cruised into second with the double.  That was all for Baltimore as Guidry escaped further damage and Goose Goosage closed it out with two scoreless innings of relief.   New York 4  Baltimore 2   WP: Guidry 2-0  LP:  McGregor 0-1  Sv:  Goosage (1).  HR:  Nettles (1).

Game two of the series looked a lot like game one as the Orioles scored single runs in the second and third innings but the Yankees counted with runs in the fourth, fifth, and sixth.  Baltimore tied it in the bottom of the sixth as DeCinces hard ground ball between first and second went to the wall.  Pat Kelly followed with a hard hit ball between first and second that Willie Randolph was only able to knock down allowing DeCinces to go to third.  Veteran Lee May then flied deep enough to left to plate DeCinces to tie the game at three.  New York quickly regained the lead as a leadoff triple in the top of the seventh by Mickey Rivers finally chased Oriole starter Jim Palmer.  Reliever Sammy Stewart was able to pop Willie Randolph up for the first out with Rivers still at third.  However, Munson then doubled off the right field wall scoring Rivers as the Yankees regained the lead 4-3.  One out later Nettles walked and then Chambliss singled extending the New York lead to 5-3.  In the bottom of the inning it was the Orioles turn to rally with two outs.  Belanger walked, Singleton singled to left with Belanger racing to third.  Eddie Murray then doubled to right center scoring with Belanger scoring and Singleton moving to third.  DeCinces followed with another double that drove in both Singleton and Murray as Baltimore regained the lead 6-5.  This finally chased Yankee starter Figueroa with Tidrow coming in.  After walking Pat Kelly intentionally, Terry Crowley came up to hit for Lee May, grounding a single between short and third to drive in DeCinces to extend the lead to 7-5.  Closer Don Stanhouse came in to retire the final three Yankee hitters.  WP: Stewart 1-0  LP:  Figueroa 0-2.  SV:  Stanhouse (1).

The series finale saw Orioles starter Mike Flanagan keep the Yankee hitters off balance.  Tossing the shutout as Baltimore won 2-0.  Belanger got Baltimore going with a one out triple in the bottom of the first.  Singleton then doubled down the first base line as Belanger scored easily.  While that would turn out to be all Flanagan would need the O's added another run in the bottom of the second.  Lee May began the inning reaching on an error.  Dempsey then singled to left center as May raced to third.  Garcia then grounded into a double play but May scored.  Flanagan allowed only seven hits, no walks, and four strikeouts.  WP: Flanagan 2-0  LP: John 1-1.  

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