10/11/12 1:09 AM ET
Jones 'not satisfied' that misplay cost O's run
By Brittany Ghiroli and Adam Rosenbloom / MLB.com
Baltimore went on to lose, 3-2, in 12 innings to fall behind 2-1 in the best-of-five American League Division Series, and Jones said making excuses regarding the play wouldn't be his style.
"I'm not satisfied that I didn't catch the ball," said Jones, who was doing his customary bubble-gum blowing as he made the attempt. "To make an excuse for that would definitely not be me. I point-blank missed the ball. I don't know what happened. I thought it was where it was going to be and thought wrong at that time. It costs a run."
Television replays showed Jones misread the ball off the bat -- taking a few steps in -- and couldn't recover, with Russell Martin easily scoring on the play and Jeter sliding safely into third.
"He got a good swing on it, the ball was up a little bit, just kind of carried," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "Playing him probably a little cheap there, but Adam is a great center fielder. If it's catchable, he's going to catch it."
Gonzalez tossed seven scoreless innings in the loss, with the O's dropping to 30-10 in one-game runs this year.
Loss ends Orioles' extra-innings win streak at 16
NEW YORK -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter says his team works to be "brilliant in the basics." Baltimore limits errors and capitalizes on opportunities -- it's why the O's entered the American League Division Series with a 74-0 record when leading after seven innings and, more appropriate for Wednesday night, as winners of 16 straight extra-inning games.
Both streaks are now over, the former ending Sunday after the Yankees' five-run ninth inning in Game 1, and the latter when Raul Ibanez hit a walk-off home run in the 12th inning of Game 3 Wednesday night at Yankee Stadium.
"It's very hard to do what these young men do for a living," Showalter said. "It doesn't always work out perfectly, and that's part of it -- it's happened at times during the year, and it's part of the process."
On paper, the Orioles felt good about coming into Yankee Stadium needing to win two of three. Baltimore was the only team to post a winning record against the Yankees in the Bronx this season, taking all three series against their division rivals. Their only extra-inning losses this season came against New York -- on April 10 and 11, the teams' fifth and sixth games of the year -- but that was at Camden Yards.
The trends were favorable. But the difference on Wednesday was that the Orioles were not entirely brilliant in the basics. They got seven innings of one-run ball from starter Miguel Gonzalez, but closer Jim Johnson blew his second save of the series when he gave up the game-tying home run by Ibanez in the ninth and Brian Matusz followed suit in the 12th.
It leaves the Orioles with one option: put it in the rearview mirror and play the same game on Thursday night that the Orioles played all season.
"Stunned, no. Stunned left me a while ago," Showalter said. "I got a grip on how hard this is to do. The problem with a lot of coaches and managers, they forget about how hard the game is to play and how tough a night they've had on given times. It's very hard to do what they do.
"When you see it done with the consistency in the Major Leagues when people do it, Jimmy is a big-hearted, talented guy, that believe me, we'd be at home watching without people like Jim Johnson. He's a special guy. We're real proud of him, and you'll see him again tomorrow night, I hope."
Call it managing by example.
"We've all worked so hard this year to get to this point and we can't let one bad pitch or one game ruin it," Matusz said. "Just got to move forward and stay positive."
Hammel would start possible Game 5 for Orioles
NEW YORK -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter said on Wednesday that, if necessary, Jason Hammel will start Game 5 of the American League Division Series on Friday at Yankee Stadium.
After Wednesday's 3-2 loss in 12 innings, Showalter picked lefty Joe Saunders over Chris Tillman to start Game 4, meaning Tillman won't get a start, at least not in the ALDS.
"No, that will probably be Ham," Showalter said before Wednesday's game about whether Tillman or Saunders could possibly start Game 5. "He is having a work day right now. If that goes like we hope it goes, he would pitch Friday."
Hammel allowed two runs over 5 2/3 innings in Sunday's series opener, his first outing since Sept. 11 and just his fourth start since undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his right knee in mid-July. He made two starts upon his September return, but discomfort forced him to miss the rest of the regular season.
On Sunday, he kept the Orioles in the game, but inefficiency led to his relatively early departure. Hammel allowed four hits and issued as many walks, tossing 112 pitches -- the first time he surpassed the 100-pitch mark since July 7 against the Angels.
Hammel made three regular-season starts against the Yankees this year -- two in Baltimore -- finishing with a 3.94 ERA. But the best of those starts came at Yankee Stadium on April 30, when the right-hander tossed six innings of two-run ball in a 2-1 O's loss.
Betemit, Britton could be available if O's advance
NEW YORK -- Should the Orioles advance to the American League Championship Series, infielder Wilson Betemit and left-hander Zach Britton are among several options who could be added to the team's roster.
Manager Buck Showalter said Betemit (right wrist injury) has been serving at designated hitter in the team's instructional league games in Florida, and the plan is for him to play first and third base on Thursday. Betemit hit .261/.322/.422 with 12 homers and 40 RBIs in 102 games.
Britton threw three innings in a simulated game Tuesday as they try to build him back up as a starting option. The 24-year-old lefty went 5-3 with a 5.07 ERA in 12 games (11 starts).
Manny Machado became the youngest Orioles player to hit a postseason home run when he took Yankees starter Hiroki Kuroda deep in the fifth inning on Wednesday. The 20-year-old Machado also became the second youngest player ever to hit a home run in the playoffs. Andruw Jones, who homered against the Yankees in the 1996 World Series as a 19-year-old, is the youngest.
Rookie Ryan Flaherty hit the Orioles' first home run of the playoffs with a third-inning solo homer off Kuroda. It was Baltimore's first postseason home run since Eric Davis went deep in Game 5 of the 1997 American League Championship Series on Oct. 13.
Flaherty and Machado are the only Orioles rookies to hit postseason home runs in club history.
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. Adam Rosenbloom is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.