A.J. Burnett was very good tonight. He tossed eight strong innings, struck out a season-high ten batters, allowed only five hits, and walked only two batters. However, three of those five hits turned out to be very costly during a night in which the Yankees' bats did not show up.
Mark Reynolds took Brunett deep into the Yankee bullpen with a two run shot in the second inning, giving the Orioles an early 2-0 lead. Derrek Lee provided the rest of the offense for the O's, pitching in with an RBI double in the fourth and a solo home run in the sixth.
Take a look at Burnett's line and it looks less inspiring due to the four runs, but he really only made three mistakes. Granted, they were costly, but he pitched a lot better than his line suggests.
The Yankees never gave Burnett a chance in this game, with their only offense coming from Mark Teixeira, who hit his 29th homer of the season, and an RBI double from Nick Swisher. Derek Jeter and Russell Martin pitched in with singles, Robinson Cano added a double, and Jorge Posada broke out of his slump by going 2-for-2 with two walks. It was the third time Posada has reached base four times in one game this season.
However, give credit to Jeremy Guthrie, who said goodbye to his Yankee woes. He tossed seven strong innings, struck out five, allowed only seven baserunners, and got eleven groundball outs to just three fly outs.
Back to back doubles from Cano and Swisher brought the tying run to the plate, and Jorge Posada's walk brought the winning run to the plate. However, the Yankee threat was ended after Russell Martin weakly grounded into a fielder's choice to short and Brett Gardner struck out swinging to end the game (after taking what should have been ball four in the right-handed batter's box).
1-for-9 with RISP will not get it done, especially when you leave eight runners on base in the process.
It was a tough loss, especially considering Burnett pitched well and the Yanks had a chance to win this in the ninth. Tomorrow is another day.
Play of the Game: Reynolds' two-run shot.