Thursday, July 23, 2015

Recap: Yankees 9, Orioles 3

Ubaldo Jimenez had a thoroughly terrible start, surrendering seven earned runs in just 2 1/3 innings as the Yankees blew out the Orioles, 9-3, to complete the sweep Thursday at Yankee Stadium. 

Early Offense: The Yankees tallied Jimenez for four runs in the bottom of the first, a bases-loaded double from Chase Headley plating all but one of them. After watching Mark Teixeira and Carlos Beltran fail to produce before him, Headley drilled a first-pitch fastball high off the center-field wall -- giving the Yankees an early cushion and setting up Didi Gregorius for a subsequent RBI single.

Like an Ace: For the third outing in a row, Masahiro Tanaka looked great on the mound -- yielding just three earned runs over 7 2/3 innings while walking none and striking out seven. Tanaka held the Orioles to just five hits on the afternoon, but once again had trouble with the long ball as three O's -- Chris Davis, J.J. Hardy and Manny Machado -- took him deep. 

Productivity at its Best: Jacoby Ellsbury homered, drove in four and scored twice in Thursday's contest -- finishing a triple shy of the cycle following a groundout in his last at-bat. Ellsbury's second-inning solo shot landed all the way in the right-field bleachers, good for the outfielder's third home run of the year and second in eight games. 

Help from an Unlikely Source: Not known for his offensive capabilities, Stephen Drew laced an RBI double to right in the third -- easily scoring Gregorius from second and extending New York's advantage to 6-1. The knock was part of a 7-for-12 day for the Yankees' lower third, which along with a 3-for-4 performance from John Ryan Murphy, contributed to each of the team's major rallies. 

Who's Chris Capuano?: The lefty appeared for the first time since July 5 in the eighth, tossing a scoreless frame in relief of Tanaka. He fanned Davis for the second out in the ninth, and was removed moments later for youngster Branden Pinder.

Next Up: The Yankees will try to make it five straight wins on Friday when they visit the Twins at Target Field -- beginning at 8:10 p.m. ET and airing live on the YES Network. Michael Pineda (9-6, 3.77 ERA) will start for the Yanks hoping to rebound from a rough loss on Saturday, facing former Pinstripes phenom Phil Hughes (8-6, 4.15 ERA).

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)