T.J. McFarland's first big league start will come against the New York Yankees .
But with New York's recent lack of offense, the task of facing the Bronx Bombers could prove to be less intimidating than it sounds.
McFarland takes the mound for the Baltimore Orioles on Friday night as they host the Yankees.
Fellow rookie Kevin Gausman was originally slated to start in the series opener. However, manager Buck Showalter announced a change of plans after Thursday's 7-3 win over Cleveland - not entirely surprising given Gausman's 0-3 record and 7.66 ERA through his five starts.
McFarland (1-0, 4.14 ERA) has made 18 appearances for the Orioles (44-36), primarily in long relief. The left-hander threw two scoreless innings in a 3-0 loss at New York on April 14.
Acquired from Cleveland in December's Rule 5 Draft, McFarland is expected to throw around 80 pitches, Showalter told the team's official website. Gausman will be available for relief duty.
"Mac is throwing the ball well and deserves an opportunity while we have an opportunity to take a look at it," Showalter said of the 24-year-old. "We had a couple options, he was one of them and that's where we are going to go tomorrow."
McFarland runs into a cold lineup for New York (42-36), which just completed a 4-5 homestand. The Yankees' 56 runs since June 7 are the fewest in baseball as they've gone 7-11. Their .210 average over that span is also the worst, while their 10 home runs are tied for last.
New York was shut out for the seventh time this season - one more than all of 2012 - and the third time this month in a 2-0 loss to Texas on Thursday. Singles by Ichiro Suzuki and Austin Romine were the only hits off starter Derek Holland .
Suzuki has been a recent bright spot, batting .364 over his last 14 contests with at least one hit in each of the last seven.
"If you don't score runs, that becomes an issue," manager Joe Girardi told the team's official website. "I believe we're capable of scoring runs. I think we can. But time will tell."
Baltimore had lost five of six prior to Thursday's victory. It was highlighted by a five-run fifth inning, which included Manny Machado 's first career ejection after the third baseman argued that he foul-tipped the ball on a third strike. Chris Davis drove in the go-ahead run with a fielder's choice grounder later in the inning.
Davis, who went 9 for 22 (.409) with two home runs as Baltimore split its first six meetings with New York, is 0 for 7 with four strikeouts against scheduled starter David Phelps (5-4, 4.01).
Phelps threw four innings of scoreless relief while allowing only one hit in New York's 5-3 loss to Baltimore on April 13. He also recorded three scoreless relief appearances against the Orioles last year, but posted an 8.31 ERA without a decision in two starts.
The right-hander is 4-3 with a 3.63 ERA over 10 starts this season.
Matt Wieters is 3 for 7 against Phelps with two homers.
|New York Yankees|
|June 16, 2013||Mark Teixeira||15-Day DL||Right wrist surgery - out for season|
|June 15, 2013||Mark Teixeira||Day-to-Day||Wrist|
|June 14, 2013||Kevin Youkilis||15-Day DL||Lumbar spine strain|
|June 01, 2013||Chris Stewart||Day-to-Day||Left game - dehydration|
|May 25, 2013||Curtis Granderson||15-Day DL||Broken left pinkie finger|
|May 24, 2013||Curtis Granderson||Day-to-Day||Left game - Broken left pinkie finger|
|June 20, 2013||Steve Pearce||15-Day DL||Left wrist tendinitis|
|June 17, 2013||Jason Hammel||Day-to-Day||Illness|
|June 06, 2013||Steve Johnson||15-Day DL||Strained left oblique|
|May 24, 2013||Pedro Strop||15-Day DL||Lower back strain|
|May 24, 2013||Pedro Strop||15-Day DL||Lower back strain|
|May 13, 2013||Wei-Yin Chen||15-Day DL||Strained right oblique|
BALTIMORE (AP) -- Held hitless through five innings by CC Sabathia and down by three runs with a rookie on the mound, the Baltimore Orioles didn't appear to be in position to muster a comeback against the New York Yankees .
A couple of dinky hits and a daring move on the basepaths got the Orioles started, and Nate McLouth hit a tiebreaking home run in the seventh inning to rally Baltimore to a 4-3 victory Friday night.
"Tonight was a team win because we didn't get anything until the sixth inning," said Adam Jones , who drove in the tying run. "We got everything in spurts."
Sabathia was vying for his 200th win and New York manager Joe Girardi was in line for his 600th career victory, but Orioles rookie pitcher Kevin Gausman was the one who ended up celebrating a milestone win.
Gausman (1-3) earned his first major league victory, allowing three hits over 4 1-3 innings as part of a relief crew that blanked the Yankees over the final six innings. Gausman followed for Rule 5 draftee T.J. McFarland, who yielded three runs in 2 2-3 innings in his first major league start.
"It's funny because McFarland got his first (win) when I was pitching and I got my first when he started," Gausman said.
Tommy Hunter got the final six outs for his second save. Orioles manager Buck Showalter opted against using closer Jim Johnson , who has blown five save opportunities this season.
"I think he's leading the league in appearances, he pitched three out of four days, threw 60-something pitches in three days," Showalter said. "I just wanted to give him one more day. He feels good and I want to keep him that way."
Sabathia (8-6) took a no-hitter and a 3-0 lead into the sixth, when it all came apart.
"We've been battling and scuffling all year, fighting through all the injuries," the left-hander said. "Then to come out here and get three and not be able to hold it... it's extremely frustrating."
McLouth and Casilla singled and scored on a double by Manny Machado , who was 2 for 13 lifetime against Sabathia. Machado took third on a fly ball by J.J. Hardy and came home on an infield dribbler by Jones - a hit that mirrored Casilla's earlier in the inning.
"We got a couple swinging bunts there that worked out our way," Showalter said.
Plus, Machado wouldn't have scored had he not advanced on the fly ball. Making the final out at third base is a cardinal sin in baseball, but Machado's risk proved worthwhile.
"I think that's the key to the game," Jones said.
At least as significant as McLouth's shot on an 80 mph slider. When the ball cleared the fence, Sabathia dropped into a crouch on the mound and wore a disgusted look on his face, about the same frown he displayed when walking off the mound.
"It was just everything from the night," Sabathia said. "Like I said, not being able to hold the lead, and then the ultimate of giving up the lead and giving up the game. It's frustrating. I try not to show my emotions too much, but it happens."
Sabathia allowed four runs and five hits in seven innings. He was seeking his 200th career win; instead, the left-hander fell to 17-5 lifetime against the Orioles.
In the days leading up to the game, the Yankees listed David Phelps as their starter. But Sabathia got the call, and Girardi insisted the mix-up stemmed from a miscommunication between pitching coach Larry Rothschild and the team's public relations department.
"In my mind, it was always CC on Friday and Phelps on Saturday," Girardi said.
Robinson Cano had three hits for the Yankees to move past Frank Crosetti into 19th place on the team career list with 1,543. Cano drove in a run and scored one, but it wasn't enough to prevent New York from losing its third straight and 11th in 16 games.
McFarland faced only three batters before falling into a 1-0 hole. Brett Gardner opened the game with a double and scored on a single by Cano.
The Yankees got two on with one out in the second before McFarland worked out of the jam. But the rookie couldn't get through a third inning in which New York scored twice on four hits.
Singles by Lance Nix, Cano and Vernon Wells produced a run, and Chris Stewart chased McFarland with a two-out RBI single for a 3-0 lead.
Through five innings, the only Baltimore batter to reach was Alexi Casilla on an error by third baseman Alberto Gonzalez .
In the sixth, though, the Orioles finally solved Sabathia.
"I feel like I'm wasting starts," he said. "I'm throwing the ball good, but just not being able to put together a whole start. It's frustrating."
NOTES: Commenting on the effort of injured stars Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez to return, Girardi said, "I don't know which one we'll see play in a game first." ... Baltimore's Adam Jones has not drawn a walk in 165 plate appearances since May 18. ... Machado's double was his 37th, tops in the majors and just 19 short of Brian Roberts ' single-season team record. ... Ichiro Suzuki 's 21-game hitting streak at Camden Yards ended with an 0-for-4 performance. ... Phelps, who has won his last nine starts against AL East foes, will be opposed by lefty Zach Britton on Saturday night.