The New York Yankees nearly squandered a sterling performance from pitcher Bartolo Colon last night, squeezing out a 4-1 win in 15 innings over the Baltimore Orioles.
Alex Rodriguez went 4-7 at the plate and Robinson Cano scored two runners with a key double in the 15th inning to notch the win at Camden Fields, in Baltimore. Colon struck out seven and limited the Orioles to three hits in eight innings before being lifted by Yankees manager Joe Girardi after just 87 pitches. The Yanks were leading 1-0 at the time, but closer Mariano Rivera allowed singles to Adam Jones and Nick Markakis. Vladimir Guerrero then slapped a sacrifice fly to left field, scoring Jones for the tie.
After Cano's double in the 15th, Orioles pitcher Mike Gonzalez hit right fielder Chris Dickerson in the head with a fastball. Gonzalez maintained that the pitch got away from him, but the umpires ejected Gonzalez.
Hector Noesi, making his major league debut, held the Orioles scoreless in the last four innings to get the win.
The Yankees' quartet of famous veterans stayed in the news last night, as Rodriguez's name was associated with further tests to his sore hip, Jorge Posada was dropped from the lineup, Derek Jeter moved over from shortstop to designated hitter, and Rivera recorded a rare blown save. But Colon and Noesi showed what the team's veterans and rookies could do for the team outside of the drama.