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Yankees' late rally falls short in 10-7 loss to Orioles

02/27/2013 4:39 PM ET
By Lou DiPietro

Brett Gardner had a three-run triple in Wednesday's Yankees loss.(AP)
Offense came early and came late for the Yankees, but quiet bats in the middle innings and five defensive errors were too much for the Bombers to overcome in a 10-7 loss to the Orioles at George M. Steinbrenner Field.

The Yankees committed two of those errors in a rough first inning, which saw starter Nik Turley allow five runs before recording an out. A leadoff walk and three straight hits brought in Baltimore’s first two runs, and after shortstop Jayson Nix’s throwing error on Russ Canzler’s grounder allowed two more to score, Turley uncorked a pair of wild pitches to bring home Canzler and make it 5-0 Orioles. The young lefty was then lifted after striking out Lew Ford to end a rough 26-pitch outing, and Cody Eppley came on to get the final two outs of the inning.

Baltimore got a pair in the second off Eppley to make it 7-0, but the Yankees would fight back right away; Dan Johnson drew a one-out walk off O’s starter Jake Arrieta, and after a Zoilo Almonte single and Slade Heathcott’s fielder’s choice, Chris Stewart rapped an RBI single up the middle to make it 7-1.

T.J. MacFarland relieved Jake Arrieta at that point, and the lefty walked Corban Joseph to load the bases before Brett Gardner’s triple to center field cleared them to cut the deficit in half. MacFarland recovered to strike out Jayson Nix, however, and end the threat.

The Orioles then got their final three runs in the seventh off lefty Josh Spence, none of them earned; a throwing error by third baseman Walter Ibarra allowed Chris Robinson to reach with one out, and after a single and a walk loaded the bases, Baltimore got an RBI groundout from Buck Britton and a two-run single from Luis Exposito to cap their offensive output for the day.

The Yankees would then rally in the ninth, but come up just short. Jose Pirela’s RBI single and Kyle Roller’s two-run single got the Yankees within three, but with the bases loaded and the winning run at the plate, Branden Kline got Adonis Garcia to ground out to third to end the game.

Offensively, 10 different players accounted for the team’s 10 hits, with Gardner’s three-run triple the big blow and Juan Rivera’s fifth-inning double accounting for the team’s only other extra-base hit. Gardner also added a walk in three trips, and Dan Johnson and Ramon Flores both drew a pair of walks.

On the mound, the Yankees got a strong performance from lefty Francisco Rondon (2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 2 K), saw righty Mark Montgomery pitch a scoreless inning in his spring debuts, and got a pair of strikeouts from Ryan Pope, who had allowed a run on two hits to the Orioles on Monday, in a perfect ninth.

With the loss, the Yankees drop to 1-4 on the Grapefruit circuit, but will have a pair of chances to add a tally to the left column on Thursday when they split their squad; one crew will head to Kissimmee to battle the Houston Astros, while one will stay behind in Tampa to host the Blue Jays in a game you can see at 1 p.m. on YES.

Follow Lou DiPietro on Twitter: @LouDiPietroYES

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