ALDS Live Blog: O's Closer Johnson Buckles In Ninth As Yankees Win
Yankees catcher Russell Martin broke a 2-2 tie in the ninth inning of the American League Division Series' first game with a solo home run to left field off Orioles closer Jim Johnson. Johnson, who had 51 saves during the regular season, had given up just three home runs in 2012. But, the Yankees got four hits in a row to open the inning and scored five runs in the ninth for a 7-2 win. In addition to Martin's blast, Eduardo Nunez, Derek Jeter, Ichiro Suzuki and Robinson Cano scored during the frame.
Mark Teixeira hit an RBI single to tie the game during the fourth inning, but was caught at second base going for a double.
Nate McLouth gave the Orioles a 2-1 lead on the Yankees in the third inning, and the Orioles had several chances to re-take the lead, but blew them throughout the game.
The hit restored the frenzied energy among the 47,841 fans at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, which was slightly muted at the game's start. Yankees star Jeter singled off Jason Hammel and scored on an RBI double by Suzuki to grab a 1-0 lead. Suzuki, though, was caught stealing third. Hammel recovered to strike out Alex Rodriguez and Cano flied out to right to end the inning.
Hammel looked as if he was done after throwing 99 pitches through five innings, but came back out for the sixth and recorded two outs before giving up a single to Nick Swisher.
This was his first outing in nearly a month, and he labored during the first two innings as the Yankees sat on pitches and walked four times off Hammel. The Orioles starter gave up three hits and three runs during the first five innings and ultimately was pulled after 112 pitches for Troy Patton. Patton promptly gave up a single to Teixeira to put runners on first and second. Patton got out of the jam by getting Curtis Granderson to fly out to right to end the sixth. Patton and Darren O'Day pitched well in relief.
The Orioles, meanwhile, did nothing against New York starter CC Sabathia during the bottom of the first and second innings. But, they got back-to-back singles when Chris Davis and Lew Ford led off the third. Both runners advanced on a solid sacrifice bunt by Robert Andino and Davis scored on McLouth's single.
The O's once again got runners on base in the fifth thanks to singles by Chris Davis and Robert Andino. McLouth, though struck out and J.J. Hardy grounded out to second.
Brian Matusz came on in relief for the Orioles during the eighth and allowed a walk, but struck out Curtis Granderson to end the inning.
The game got a late start at 8:40 p.m. because of rain.
Posted Oct. 7, 2012 (updated at 12:02 a.m.)