Ibanez homers in the ninth and 12th to stun the O’s in Game 3

That was a stunning, stunning loss for the Orioles.

Miguel Gonzalez pitched his heart out. Two rookies homered. They were two outs away from a win and they lost 3-2 in 12 innings as the Yankees take a 2-1 lead in the American League Division Series.

The Yankees pinch-hit Raul Ibanez for Alex Rodriguez, a $29 million dollar player this year, and Ibanez homered in the ninth to tie the game and in the 12th to win it.

Two swings, two homers, one devastating loss for Baltimore.

Ibanez stepped in for Rodriguez, who was 1-for-12 with seven strikeouts in the series, in the ninth and homered with one out off O’s closer Jim Johnson to tie the game 2-2.

He hit the first pitch of the last of the 12th - a pitch up in the zone from Brian Matusz - to give New York a walk-off win. It was the first walk-off loss for the Orioles all year and ended their 16-game winning streak in extra innings. All three of their extra-inning losses have come against New York.

Gonzalez pitched seven innings, allowing just five hits and one run with no walks and eight strikeouts. He threw 99 pitches, 69 for strikes and kept the Yankees hitters off balance all night with some very impressive off-speed pitches to compliment his low-90s fastball.

New York’s second through seventh batters went a combined 1-for-18 with six strikeouts against him.

Gonzalez has pitched to an ERA of 2.18 this year against the Yankees and all three starts came at Yankee Stadium. Over 20 2/3 innings there, he has allowed 15 hits with five runs, one walk and 25 strikeouts. O’s starters have now pitched to an ERA of 1.82 in the postseason.

The Orioles took a 1-0 lead in the third when Ryan Flaherty hit a Hiroki Kuroda slider out to right field. Derek Jeter’s RBI triple tied the game in the bottom of the inning. The replays showed Adam Jones initially breaking in on the ball which landed just out of his reach.

But the Orioles moved back ahead when 20-year-old Manny Machado homered to left to lead off the top of the fifth. Machado becomes the third 20-year-old to hit a postseason homer, joining Miguel Cabrera and Mickey Mantle. Machado and Flaherty become the first pair of rookie teammates to ever homer in the same postseason game. The Orioles had never had a homer in a playoff game from a rookie before tonight.

But the Orioles have scored just seven runs in this series and just 12 in four postseason games. Jones and Matt Wieters went a combined 1-for-10 tonight and now that duo is a combined 3-for-26 in this series.

Tonight, the Orioles had just six hits on the night and only a single after the fifth inning.

The Orioles went 76-0 in the regular season when leading after seven innings and 75-1 when leading after eight. But they are now 2-1 in the postseason in both situations after this loss.

Game 4 is set for 7:37 p.m. Thursday night. The Orioles need a win to keep their season from ending while the Yankees need a win to reach the next round.

Joe Saunders was named by Buck Showalter after tonight’s game to start Game 4 against New York’s Phil Hughes.

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