Error aids Yankees’ comeback
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Talented reliever Pedro Strop and the Baltimore Orioles built an incredible streak this summer with a big run in close games.
When the calendar turned to September, they suddenly lost their grip.
Strop lost the strike zone, and sure-handed shortstop J.J. Hardy’s bases-loaded error let New York complete a seventh-inning comeback as the Yankees stung the Baltimore Orioles, 4-3, Saturday at Yankee Stadium, restoring their AL East lead to three games.
The streaking Orioles had won a team-record 13 straight one-run decisions.
‘‘A lot of people bend but don’t break,’’ said Orioles manager Buck Showalter. ‘‘It’s not one of those things that we’re going to dwell on: This could have been. That should have been. That would have been.
‘‘We understand that. These guys will turn the page.”
Shut down all afternoon, the struggling Yankees rallied for three runs in the seventh.
Newly promoted Eduardo Nunez hit an RBI single with two outs that chased Wei-Yin Chen (12-8) and made it 3-2. Strop walked Ichiro Suzuki and then threw two quick strikes to Derek Jeter before walking him, forcing home the tying run.
‘‘I didn’t have my stuff that I usually bring,’’ Strop said. ‘‘I don’t feel my command was that good to get it done.’’
Nick Swisher followed with a hard one-hopper that ate up Hardy, who leads major league shortstops in fielding percentage, and the Yankees took the lead.
Dodgers 2, Diamondbacks 1— Josh Beckett pitched 6⅔ strong innings for his first victory since being traded from the Red Sox and Andre Ethier hit a tiebreaking homer in the sixth to help host Los Angeles beat Arizona.
Rays 5, Blue Jays 4 — Matt Joyce homered and had three RBIs, Ryan Roberts also connected, and visiting Tampa Bay beat Toronto.
Tigers 5, White Sox 1 — Max Scherzer allowed four hits in eight scoreless innings, and host Detroit pulled within a game of first-place Chicago in the AL Central.
Angels 5, Mariners 2— Mark Trumbo hit a two-run single in the eighth inning that helped hand Felix Hernandez his first loss in nearly three months as Los Angeles won in Seattle.
Giants 5, Cubs 2 — Tim Lincecum pitched four-hit ball into the seventh inning and Xavier Nady had a three-run double in his first game of the season, helping NL West-leading San Francisco prevail in Chicago.
Astros 2, Reds 1 — Cincinnati second baseman Wilson Valdez’s error on a routine grounder by Jose Altuve with two outs in the ninth lifted host Houston.
Mets 5, Marlins 3 — Kelly Shoppach hit a go-ahead, two-run single with two outs in the ninth that cleared the bases when center fielder Justin Ruggiano misplayed the ball, leading New York in Miami.
Brewers 3, Pirates 2 — Corey Hart homered to lead off the bottom of the ninth, lifting Milwaukee over Pittsburgh.
Phillies 5, Braves 1 — Cliff Lee took advantage of some rare run support, throwing seven scoreless innings to lead visiting Philadelphia past Atlanta.
Rockies 9, Padres 1 — Jhoulys Chacin pitched seven strong innings, Dexter Fowler hit his first career grand slam, and host Colorado routed San Diego.
Cardinals 10, Nationals 9 — David Freese homered, drove in three runs, and had a go-ahead single in the ninth inning as visiting St. Louis ended a four-game skid with a wild win over Washington.
Indians 4, Rangers 3 — Jeanmar Gomez and three Cleveland relievers combined to beat visiting Texas and snap a six-game losing streak.
Twins sweep Royals — Joe Mauer hit a grand slam and Chris Parmelee added a three-run shot and Minnesota outlasted host Kansas City, 8-7, to complete a doubleheader sweep. Justin Morneau drove in two runs to support Cole De Vries in a 3-1 win in Game 1.