|N.Y. Yankees «||1||0||1||0||2||0||1||0||0||1||6||13||0|
Thus, when Damon stepped to the plate against Ray (1-2) in the 10th, the Yankees' leadoff hitter wasn't interested in just getting on base. He was looking for a pitch to drive over the wall, and he got it: a 1-1 fastball at the knees.
"I think that might be the best swing of my 12-year career," Damon said within a decidedly upbeat clubhouse. "It wasn't a bad pitch, he kept it down, but just the way the ball took off the bat, a low liner, against the wind too, I think that might have been my best swing."
"I don't hit too many home runs to center field," Damon said. "It was definitely the right situation."
That gave the Yankees the lead, but New York also was without closer Mariano Rivera, who probably won't pitch this weekend because of a bad back. So manager Joe Torre turned to Chien-Ming Wang to get the final two outs.
Wang got an out, then gave up a couple of singles before retiring Javy Lopez on a flyball to earn his first major league save.
"It couldn't have worked out any better for us," Torre said.
And so, despite playing without four offensive stars and their star closer, the Yankees won for the seventh time in eight games.
"We've got a lot of people contributing right now. The young guys that have come up are doing a great job," said Derek Jeter, who had two hits and an RBI. "Our pitching staff is doing great, we still have a makeshift bullpen with Mo out, but everyone is playing their part. You have to try to find ways to get it done when guys aren't healthy."
Said Damon: "I think you have to give a lot of credit to the players who were here before, like Jorge Posada and Derek Jeter, Bernie Williams, but also Joe Torre. He's doing a great job moving guys in the lineup, giving them opportunities."
Johnson allowed only three hits -- one after the first inning -- before being lifted in the eighth with New York up 5-3.
Scott Proctor came in after Johnson walked Brian Roberts with one out. The reliever retired Melvin Mora, but Miguel Tejada followed with an RBI double and Ramon Hernandez tied it with a double to left-center.
The 42-year-old Johnson struck out eight and walked three. It was his second straight impressive outing: On Monday, he blanked Detroit on two hits over six innings.
Proctor (2-1), who struck out three in 1 2/3 innings, got the win.
Hernandez went 3-for-4 with a homer and three RBI for the Orioles, who committed a season-high three errors.
"The good thing is we keep getting ourselves in position to win," Baltimore manager Sam Perlozzo said. "Sooner or later, someone's going to get the big base hit to put us over the hump."
Baltimore rookie Adam Loewen, making his first major league start, gave up three earned runs, six hits and four walks in five innings. He left with the Orioles trailing 4-3.
"It felt good to go out there and pitch five innings and keep my team in the game," the left-hander said. "Most of their hits weren't hard, but they made me work hard on every pitch."
New York got an unearned run in the first inning when Williams hit an RBI single after Tejada fumbled Posada's two-out grounder to shortstop.
Baltimore took a 3-1 lead in the bottom half. Tejada hit an RBI single before Hernandez drove a 1-2 pitch into the left-field seats -- the team-high 12th homer allowed by Johnson this season.
Williams drove in a run with a groundout in the third, and the Yankees went up 4-3 in the fifth. Melky Cabrera singled and scored on a double by Jeter, who stole third and scored on a sacrifice fly by Williams.
Phillips hit his second homer in two games, off Sendy Rleal, in the seventh.
|Johnny Damon's homer in the top of the 10th inning is his seventh of the season. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
|New York Yankees|
|Johnny Damon, CF||5||2||3||1||1||0||1|
|Melky Cabrera, LF||6||2||1||0||0||0||7|
|Derek Jeter, SS||5||1||2||1||1||2||1|
|Jorge Posada, C||4||0||0||0||1||2||3|
|Bernie Williams, DH||4||0||1||3||0||0||0|
|Andy Phillips, 1B||5||1||1||1||0||2||5|
|Robinson Cano, 2B||5||0||2||0||0||1||1|
|Miguel Cairo, 3B||4||0||2||0||1||0||1|
|Kevin Thompson, RF||4||0||1||0||1||1||3|
|2B - Derek Jeter (, Loewen)|
|HR - Johnny Damon (, Ray), Andy Phillips (, Rleal)|
|SF - Bernie Williams ()|
|RBI - Johnny Damon (), Derek Jeter (), Bernie Williams 3 (), Andy Phillips ()|
|2-OUT RBI - Bernie Williams ()|
|SB - Johnny Damon (, 2nd base off Britton/Hernandez), Derek Jeter (, 3rd base off Loewen/Hernandez), Miguel Cairo (, 2nd base off Loewen/Hernandez)|
|CS - Derek Jeter (, 2nd base by Hawkins/Hernandez), Miguel Cairo (, 3rd base by Loewen/Hernandez)|
|Team LOB - 13|
|New York Yankees|
|Scott Proctor (BS,; W,-)||1.2||3||1||1||0||3||0|
|Mike Myers (H,)||0.1||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Chien-Ming Wang (S,)||0.2||2||0||0||0||0||0|
|Pitches-Strikes - Randy Johnson 114-73, Scott Proctor 30-23, Mike Myers 1-1, Chien-Ming Wang 15-10|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Randy Johnson 9-5, Chien-Ming Wang 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Randy Johnson 28, Scott Proctor 8, Mike Myers 1, Chien-Ming Wang 4|
|Brian Roberts, 2B||3||2||0||0||2||0||0|
|Melvin Mora, 3B||5||0||0||0||0||2||2|
|Miguel Tejada, SS||5||2||3||2||0||0||0|
|Brandon Fahey, PR||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Ramon Hernandez, C||4||1||3||3||1||0||0|
|Javy Lopez, DH||5||0||1||0||0||1||4|
|Corey Patterson, CF||4||0||1||0||0||2||1|
|Jeff Conine, 1B||4||0||0||0||0||1||2|
|Luis Matos, RF-LF||4||0||0||0||0||4||1|
|Ed Rogers, LF||3||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|a- Nick Markakis, PH-RF||1||0||0||0||0||1||1|
|a-struck out for Rogers in the 9th|
|2B - Miguel Tejada (, Proctor), Ramon Hernandez (, Proctor)|
|HR - Ramon Hernandez (, R. Johnson)|
|RBI - Miguel Tejada 2 (), Ramon Hernandez 3 ()|
|2-OUT RBI - Miguel Tejada (), Ramon Hernandez ()|
|SB - Brian Roberts 2 (, 2nd base off R. Johnson/Posada, 2nd base off Proctor/Posada), Ramon Hernandez (, 2nd base off R. Johnson/Posada), Corey Patterson (, 2nd base off Proctor/Posada)|
|Team LOB - 6|
|DP - B. Roberts-Tejada-Conine, Hernandez-Tejada|
|E - Jeff Conine (, Misplayed grounder), Miguel Tejada 2 (, Misplayed grounder)|
|Chris Ray (L,-)||1||1||1||1||0||2||1|
|IBB - Jeter by Chris Britton|
|HBP - Posada (by Adam Loewen)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Adam Loewen 102-64, Chris Britton 22-13, Sendy Rleal 7-6, Todd Williams 13-7, LaTroy Hawkins 27-16, Chris Ray 16-11|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Adam Loewen 6-4, Chris Britton 1-2, Todd Williams 2-1, LaTroy Hawkins 2-2, Chris Ray 1-0|
|Batters Faced - Adam Loewen 25, Chris Britton 6, Sendy Rleal 3, Todd Williams 4, LaTroy Hawkins 7, Chris Ray 4|
|Attendance - 48195|
|Game Time - 3:29|
|Temperature - 77|
|Umpires - Home - Mike Winters, First Base - Lance Barksdale, Second Base - Brian Runge, Third Base - Bruce Froemming|