NEW YORK - The Yankees ranked last in the American League with 191 doubles before today, the second-lowest total in the majors behind the Marlins’ 174.
So what happens in the first inning? They use doubles by Brett Gardner and Robinson Cano to take a 1-0 lead against Orioles starter Scott Feldman.
The Yankees had four doubles last night, including two by former Oriole Mark Reynolds. By my math, that’s six for New York in two games.
In case you were wondering, the Orioles are tied with the Twins for fifth in the majors with 247 doubles. The Red Sox are first with 302.
Feldman threw 17 pitches in the first. He threw 12 in the second while retiring the side in order with two strikeouts, and almost set down the Yankees in order in the third.
Manny Machado threw wildly with two outs after fielding Derek Jeter’s routine bouncer. Machado has 11 of the Orioles’ 40 errors this season, the most on the club. J.J. Hardy is next with nine.
Matt Wieters had a bloop single into right-center field in the second inning, snapping an 0-for-19 streak. Adam Jones, who was hit by a pitch, moved up to second before Nick Markakis grounded into a 4-6-3 double play.
Nate McLouth is 0-for-2 today and 0-for-14 since homering on Aug. 25.
The Yankees listed Phil Hughes as Sunday’s starter, but they switched to left-hander Andy Pettitte, who’s 28-6 with a 3.53 ERA in 43 games (41 starts) against the Orioles. Hughes is 4-13 with a 4.91 ERA this season, and 2-2 with a 5.91 ERA lifetime against the Orioles.
I asked a New York writer why the Yankees replaced Hughes with Pettitte. His response: “They want to win.”
Michael Morse is 2-for-6 with an RBI, a walk and two strikeouts against Pettitte. He’ll be in the lineup on Sunday.
Chris Davis walked past Morse this morning and jokingly told him that he’d be playing first base today. Then, they shook hands. And then, the earth shook.
Update: Feldman has held the Yankees to one run and five hits in six innings, including Curtis Granderson’s gift double in the sixth, and he still doesn’t have the lead.
Yankees starter Ivan Nova has limited the Orioles to two hits, singles by Wieters in the second and Machado in the sixth. He’s also hit two batters.
At least the collective ERA of the Orioles’ starters on this trip has gone down. It was 8.10 before today.
Feldman has thrown 97 pitches, 60 for strikes. He’s allowed two earned runs or fewer in each of his last four starts, including today.