O's cash in at Yankees' expense, 5-4

Segui's homers in eighth to tie score

Batista's sacrifice fly is win it

Bauer: first major-league win

Julio gets final five outs to record his first save

Orioles are now 4-9

April 17, 2002|By Joe Christensen | Joe Christensen,SUN STAFF

NEW YORK - On a night of firsts, the Orioles staged a come-from-behind victory over the New York Yankees last night, leaving them a dilemma on how to share the souvenir baseball.

Rick Bauer earned his first major-league victory, Jorge Julio earned his first major-league save, and none of that would have happened had David Segui not hit his first home run of the season.

Tony Batista's eighth-inning sacrifice fly gave the Orioles the lead, and Julio recorded the final five outs for a 5-4 victory at Yankee Stadium.

Bauer, who was recalled from Triple-A Rochester earlier in the day, pitched one shaky, scoreless inning and still wound up with the game ball. Julio actually insisted that Bauer keep it.

"We're going to have to talk about it," Bauer said. "Maybe we can saw it in half."

The Orioles were enjoying the moment after this one. Their record stands at 4-9, and in all four of their victories, they have come from behind. Thirteen games into the season, and Julio has the team's first save.

This time, the two teams were tied until Robin Ventura led off the sixth inning with a home run off Orioles starter Sidney Ponson for a 4-3 Yankees lead. Ventura has six home runs this season, and three have come against the Orioles.

Roger Clemens held the Orioles to three runs in seven innings, and Yankees manager Joe Torre called upon Ramiro Mendoza with a one-run lead in the eighth.

Segui took one pitch for a ball then launched Mendoza's second pitch four rows into the right-field upper deck.

"It doesn't matter how far it goes," said Segui, who had 10 homers for the Orioles last season but none in his first 48 at-bats this season.

Jeff Conine and Jay Gibbons followed Segui's blast with sharp singles to right field off Mendoza, putting runners at the corners. Torre summoned reliever Steve Karsay, and Batista brought home the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly to right field.

That's when things really got interesting.

With a depleted bullpen, Orioles manager Mike Hargrove had used Bauer to pitch the seventh inning with his team trailing 4-3. Bauer escaped the inning unharmed, stranding two runners on base after getting Derek Jeter to ground into a double play.

Once he got the lead, Hargrove turned to Buddy Groom to start the eighth. Orioles set-up man Willis Roberts was not available after pitching two innings in Monday's 13-4 loss to the White Sox at Chicago.

Groom retired Ventura, and then Rondell White singled, so Hargrove brought in Julio for his first save opportunity of the season. Julio had pitched the final inning of six games without allowing a run this season, but none of them had come in a tight situation like this.

Julio didn't blink. He retired pinch-hitter Shane Spencer and Gerald Williams to end the eighth inning, then breezed through the top of the Yankees' order - Alfonso Soriano, Nick Johnson and Jeter - to end the game.

"I don't know if you can have it any tougher," Hargrove said, "with those three hitters the Yankees throw at you, 1-2-3."

Waiting on deck when the game ended was Jason Giambi, who was booed loudly by the crowd of 33,721 after grounding into a double play his third at-bat, which followed two early strikeouts with runners in scoring position.

Asked if he wanted the game ball, Julio said, "No, I give it to my friend, Rick Bauer."

Julio had watched Bauer go 0-5 last season, so he felt like it was richly deserved.

The Orioles also could have given the game ball to Ponson, who went six innings on a night when it looked like he might not make it out of the second.

The Yankees scored three runs in the second, and the Orioles had rookie Erik Bedard warming up, but Ponson hung on to give the bullpen some much-needed rest.

Ponson remained winless since June 28, allowing seven hits and four runs.

"Sidney gathered himself," Hargrove said, "and threw the ball exceptionally well from the second inning on."

NOTES: Center fielder Bernie Williams will be out of the Yankees' lineup for at least three games because of soreness in both shoulders. ...

New York also got bad news regarding left-hander Andy Pettitte, who will miss his next start because of a tender pitching elbow.

Orioles tonight

Opponent: New York Yankees

Site: Yankee Stadium, New York

Time: 7:05

TV/Radio: CSN/WBAL (1090 AM)

Starters: Orioles' Josh Towers (0-2, 5.84) vs. Yankees' Orlando Hernandez (1-1, 1.20)

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