Morse debuts with single (updated)

NEW YORK - In Michael Morse’s first at-bat with the Orioles today, he lined a 91 mph fastball into left field for a one-out single in the second inning.

The game wasn’t halted. He didn’t keep the ball.

Yankees left-hander Andy Pettitte threw Morse a 90 mph fastball, an 87 mph cutter and 82 and 81 mph sliders before the single.

Morse entered the game batting .293 lifetime against southpaws.

The single makes Morse 1-for-1 as an Oriole. He closed his Mariners career in a 3-for-34 slump, so he was due for a hit.

Orioles left-hander Wei-Yin Chen loaded the bases in the first inning on a double and two walks, but he struck out Vernon Wells with the count full on his 26th pitch. Wells took a fastball on the outer half of the plate.

Chen needed only six pitches to get through the second. Go figure.

The Yankees have eight doubles in this series. They rank 29th in the majors with 195. What gives?

J.J. Hardy and Brian Roberts singled in the second, but Pettitte retired the next three batters on pop ups. Hardy was 0-for-13.

Orioles manager Buck Showalter was somber this morning while talking about catcher Taylor Teagarden, who was designated for assignment to make room for catcher Chris Snyder. Teagarden was one of Showalter’s favorites.

“I’m managing the guys I have here,” Showalter said, suggesting to reporters that they contact executive vice president Dan Duquette for particulars on the decision. “There were some reasons that I was made aware of, so that’s kind of where it is.”

Teagarden was 10-for-60 with the Orioles this season and 19-for-117 in two seasons after being acquired from the Rangers on Dec. 1, 2011 for minor league pitcher Randy Henry and second baseman Greg Miclat.

“I talked to him last night when I heard it happened,” Showalter said. “I know there’s a period he has to go through. He’s going back to Austin to wait for the period to pass, come and go or end up with another club. Tea did a good job for us. Who knows? Your paths have a way of crossing again. But he was well-respected.”

Snyder, who arrived at Yankee Stadium today and warmed up Chen between innings, had an opt-out clause in his contract and needed to be on the roster by Sept. 1.

“I don’t think Tea got in the way with that,” Showalter said.

Could the Orioles have carried four catchers?

“Oh sure,” Showalter said. “Could have.”

Update: The Yankees took a 1-0 lead in the third on another double by Gardner and Alfonso Soriano’s two-out single.

That’s nine doubles for the Yankees in this series, including three from Gardner.

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