Yankees’ 7-6 loss to Orioles fails to write off Boone’s men despite glaring issues

New York Yankees players meet at the pitcher’s mound after Baltimore Orioles’ Ryan Mountcastle walks to first base during the fifth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, June 19, 2024, in New York.
AP Photo/Pamela Smith

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The Yankees and Orioles engaged in a high-stakes clash Wednesday night, showcasing the fierce competition expected between the American League’s top two teams throughout the season and potentially into the postseason. Despite a determined comeback, the Yankees were edged out in a 7-6 extra-inning loss before a packed crowd of 47,155 at Yankee Stadium.

Gerrit Cole‘s strong start, a relentless Baltimore offense, and key hits from Giancarlo Stanton highlighted the game. The drama was further fueled by hit-by-pitch controversies, outstanding defensive plays, and the Yankees’ resilience in overcoming a four-run deficit to force extra innings.

Manager Aaron Boone commended the intensity of the game, acknowledging the numerous opportunities the Yankees had to clinch the win. They came close with a three-run seventh and one-run ninth before fizzling out in extra innings. The Yankees, now holding a 51-25 record, have lost just six of their last 20 games, with their AL East lead narrowing to 1 ¹/₂ games ahead of Thursday’s series finale.

“It was a hell of a game. It really was,” the manager said. “There’s a lot of things there for us, where we could have grabbed that game.”

The late innings were especially dramatic, with Stanton’s three-run homer and a blistering 120 mph RBI single in the ninth inning sparking hope for the Yankees. However, the 10th inning proved decisive. Closer Clay Holmes, pitching on consecutive nights, surrendered a bloop single to Cedric Mullins, allowing the ghost runner to score. Mullins advanced to second on Alex Verdugo’s throw home and stole third base.

Trevino’s arm continues to give headaches to Yankees

Catcher Jose Trevino, struggling with his throws, overthrew to third, enabling the Orioles to secure an insurance run. Trevino admitted his error, explaining that a poor grip led to the misthrow. This marked the 13th stolen base against Trevino in his last two games.

The loss, while disappointing, provided a thrilling preview of the intense matchups expected between these two AL contenders as the season progresses.

The Orioles held off a late Yankees rally to secure a 7-6 win in 10 innings on Wednesday night. DJ LeMahieu led off the bottom of the 10th with a single, but Anthony Santander’s diving catch on Ben Rice’s line drive turned a potential hit into a sacrifice fly.

Baltimore catcher Adley Rutschman then made a pivotal defensive play, throwing out pinch-runner Oswaldo Cabrera attempting to steal second base—something Yankees catcher Jose Trevino had struggled with earlier in the game. After Trevino drew a walk, Jahmai Jones, batting for the injured Aaron Judge, struck out to end the game.

Anthony Volpe, who scored the game-tying run in the ninth, acknowledged the Orioles’ formidable play. “They won 100 games and the division last year,” Volpe said. “We’re trying to take it from them now.”

Gerrit Cole gives Yankees a big hope

A highlight for the Yankees was the return of ace Gerrit Cole, who had been sidelined all season with nerve inflammation and edema. The reigning AL Cy Young winner pitched into the fifth inning, allowing two runs on three hits, walking one, and striking out five. Cole seemed to find his rhythm as the game progressed.

However, there were concerns for the Yankees. Trevino’s arm strength appeared diminished, leading to multiple stolen bases by the Orioles. The bullpen also faltered, with Ron Marinaccio giving up a homer, Victor Gonzalez allowing a run, and Clay Holmes taking the loss.

The game also included a controversial moment when reliever Victor Gonzalez hit Orioles shortstop Gunnar Henderson in the seventh inning, raising suspicions of retaliation after Aaron Judge was hit by a pitch the previous night. The incident added to the game’s tension and left both teams on high alert as the series continued.

A potential attempt at retaliation for Aaron Judge being hit by a pitch the previous night took a dramatic turn in the Yankees’ 7-6 extra-inning loss to the Orioles on Wednesday. In the seventh inning, with the Yankees down by three, reliever Victor Gonzalez hit Baltimore star Gunnar Henderson with a fastball on the back of the shoulder. The crowd cheered as Henderson calmly trotted to first base.

Gonzalez, through interpreter Marlon Abreu, explained that he aimed for an inside pitch, but it slipped. If intentional, the plunking backfired for the Yankees. Henderson promptly stole second and scored on Ryan Mountcastle’s double, extending the Orioles’ lead. This run proved pivotal when the Yankees’ offense came alive in the bottom half of the inning.

Giancarlo Stanton’s three-run homer off Yennier Cano brought the Yankees within one. The earlier run scored by Henderson loomed large. Alex Verdugo‘s spectacular catch against the center-field wall in the eighth preserved the Orioles’ narrow lead. Stanton’s solo blast against Craig Kimbrel in the ninth tied the game, pushing it into extra innings.

In the 10th, the Orioles managed to clinch the win, sealing a game that had slipped from their grasp earlier. Yankees manager Aaron Boone acknowledged the game’s intensity, praising both teams and hinting at more exciting clashes in the future.

“That’s a heck of a game, obviously,” he said, “against a heck of a club.”

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