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No Relief: Yankees Endure Bullpen Implosion to Beat Orioles, 6-3

It seems like so long ago, but both starting pitchers were good. Freddy Garcia made the O's look silly with a variety of pitches and speeds (6 ip, 2 h, 0 r, 2 bb, 7 k). He hasn't allowed a run in two starts. Who in their right mind thought that would've happened in Spring Training?

On the other side, Jake Arrieta had one bad inning (the first) but was dominant after that (overall: 6 ip, 5 h, 3 er, 3 bb, 9 k). He had a nasty curveball for most of the day and set a personal best for strikeouts.

Curtis Granderson started the scoring with a two-run homer two batters into the game.

The Yanks held a 3-0 lead when Garcia left and turned the ball over to the pen. Joba promptly served up a two-run longball three batters into the seventh inning (but settled enough to escape further damage). I think this is who Joba ultimately is: An inconsistent reliever who will tease you with dominant outings spaced between (nearly) blown holds.

I'm assuming Girardi went to D-Rob in the eighth rather than the "Eighth Inning Guy" because something was wrong with Soriano. Update: Soriano had a "tight lower back," but expects to be available tomorrow.

I do applaud Girardi for going to Mo in the eighth with two runners on instead of the LOOGY Logan. Mo again wasn't good, but Brett Gardner made a running catch to save two runs in the bottom of the eighth. (That's the great thing about a guy like GGBG: defense/speed doesn't slump.)

Rivera then proceeded to blow the save in the ninth, and was lucky he didn't blow the game. A Brian Roberts double was fielded cleanly by Nick Swisher who made a fine throw to Cano, who relayed it to Martin, who stabbed it from almost behind him and swung his arm all the way around into the oncoming runner. It was Mo's second straight blown save. He hadn't blown consecutive saves since 2007. Is his age finally catching up to him, or this just another bad two-week stretch that seems to happen every year?

Ironically, the Yankees were both saved and deflated by a play at the plate in back-to-back innings. Felix Pie was gunned down on the aforementioned play in the bottom of the ninth. In the top of the 10th, Jeter couldn't score on a sac-fly when Matt Wieters blocked the plate.

A rain delay in the middle of Robbie Cano's 11th-inning AB delayed his leadoff double by 45 minutes. He got lucky a few pitches later when he was caught leaning off secondbase. The throw from Wieters went to second, and on the relay to third, Cano barely beat the throw. A throwing error on a grounder two batters later led to the go-ahead run. The Yanks tacked on two more until they had rebuilt a three-run lead. Boone Logan and Buddy Carlyle closed it out in the bottom half. (What?! A non-closer closed out the game? Unheard of!)

Cano had a dreadful day until his 11th inning double (1-5, 2 k, GIDP), while Jeter may be breaking out of his slump: 4-6, 2B (though two of the hits were of the infield variety). Another brilliant game for Granderson: 3-5, HR, 2B, upping his OPS to 1.051 (third best behind A-Rod and Martin).

Play of the Game: Statistically, Brian Roberts' game-tying double in the bottom of the ninth that nearly won it was the most pivotal play (33%). But I'm going to go with a personal choice: GGBG's running catch in leftfield in the eighth that saved 1-2 runs.

Comment(ers) of the Game: Two winners today - waw and long time listener. Well done, gentlemen.