The New York Yankees have been on a roll since they last faced the Baltimore Orioles ' Chris Tillman . They'll try for a season-high sixth straight win Saturday when they face the visiting Orioles, who have won eight straight outings by Tillman.
New York (47-39) fell four games behind second-place Baltimore (48-39) in the AL East after getting swept in three games at Camden Yards last weekend. The Yankees have bounced back by matching their longest win streak of the year to move within one-half game of the Orioles.
Baltimore's sweep was capped by a 4-2 victory Sunday in which Tillman (10-2, 3.68 ERA) gave up two runs over six innings to win his sixth start in a row. He's 7-0 with a 3.86 ERA in his past eight outings.
The right-hander has gone 6-0 with a 2.76 ERA in seven road starts, but he has a poor history in the Bronx, going 2-2 with a 9.95 ERA that's his worst mark in any ballpark in which he's pitched more than once.
Robinson Cano homered off Tillman last weekend and is 10 for 19 against him overall.
Cano is hitless in seven at-bats since a torrid six-game stretch in which he went 14 for 24 with four homers and 10 RBIs. He was intentionally walked twice in a 3-2 victory Friday.
"He's one of the best players in the game, no disrespect to anybody hitting behind him," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said.
The Yankees ended a five-game losing streak to the Orioles by rallying Friday to open this three-game set. They scored twice in the ninth off closer Jim Johnson , with Vernon Wells singling in the winning run past a drawn-in infield.
"It's good," Wells said. "Momentum's on our side. This is a fun one. We needed one of these."
Baltimore also lost 3-2 on Thursday in the bottom of the ninth when it surrendered a tiebreaking homer to Chicago's Adam Dunn .
New York is batting .237 against Baltimore, scoring more than three runs twice in 10 meetings.
The Orioles, though, have struck out at least 10 times in three straight games for the first time. They struck out 11 times Friday against Ivan Nova , who pitched a three-hitter.
"It's easy to say you're running into some good pitching, but you do every night in the big leagues," Showalter said. "We've got lot of guys capable of swinging it better and giving us some margin for error."
Baltimore will get its first look at Andy Pettitte (5-6, 4.40) since beating him in Game 2 of the division series last year. Pettitte gave up three runs over seven innings of that 3-2 defeat Oct. 8.
The left-hander, however, has gone 7-0 with a 2.87 ERA in his last 10 regular-season outings against the Orioles. He has 27 regular-season wins over them, second all-time behind Whitey Ford 's 30 since the franchise moved to Baltimore in 1954.
Major league home run leader Chris Davis is 4 for 11 against Pettitte, including postseason. Davis has hit .353 with five homers and nine RBIs in the season series to help Baltimore take six of 10.
|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|
|New York Yankees|
|July 02, 2013||Hiroki Kuroda||Day-to-Day||Sore left hip flexor|
|July 02, 2013||Jayson Nix||15-Day DL||Strained right hamstring|
|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|
NEW YORK (AP) -- Andy Pettitte threw an early pitch exactly where he wanted, and watched Chris Davis launch it over the center-field wall.
Fortunately for Pettitte, most of his later offerings landed in the right spot.
Pettitte stopped the Orioles once again, Eduardo Nunez returned with a go-ahead hit and the New York Yankees beat Baltimore 5-4 Saturday for their season-high sixth straight win.
Pettitte (6-6) persevered on a hot, sticky day, hanging in after the Orioles took an early 3-0 lead and ending his four-start winless string.
"I've been frustrated," he said. "Every decision you're making, you feel like it's not the right one."
The 41-year-old Pettitte earned his 251st win, tying Hall of Famer Bob Gibson for 44th place on the all-time list.
Pettitte stretched his unbeaten streak against Baltimore to 11 starts dating to 2007, winning eight times. Overall, he is 28-6 against the Orioles - only Yankees great Whitey Ford (30) has beaten the Birds more often since the franchise moved from St. Louis to Baltimore for the 1954 season.
Pettitte got a big cheer when he trotted off with two outs in the seventh inning after 100 pitches.
"It was smokin' hot," he said. "Didn't want my guys standing out there in the heat."
Mariano Rivera worked the ninth for his 29th save.
The Yankees overcame Davis' major league-leading 33rd home run and yet another double from Manny Machado , celebrating his 21st birthday. The Orioles have lost four of five.
"Anytime you're leading early in the game, you expect to continue to lead, or at least put up some more runs," Davis said.
"One- and two-run leads in this game don't last very long, especially in this ballpark and with their offense," he said.
Nunez came off the 60-day disabled list before the game and played for the first time since a strain on his left side slowed him in early May. His key hit helped end a seven-game winning streak by Chris Tillman (10-3).
Nunez had a sacrifice fly in the second, then singled and scored in the fifth. It was 4-all when Lyle Overbay opened the sixth with a single against Tillman and advanced on a two-strike sacrifice bunt by Luis Cruz .
Next up was Nunez, and he singled up the middle. Overbay brushed past catcher Taylor Teagarden with a headfirst dive.
Nunez didn't bat much during his rehabilitation assignment. He got three hits Friday night for Double-A Trenton.
"Nuney is kind of a free spirit. I don't think he thought a lot about not having a lot of at-bats," manager Joe Girardi said.
Davis put the Orioles ahead by lofting a high fly ball that kept drifting, carrying over Brett Gardner 's leap. He matched his career high in home runs and RBIs (85), both achieved during the entire 2012 season.
Davis is tied for seventh-most homers by the All-Star game and still has more than a week to play before the break. Barry Bonds holds the mark with 39, followed by Reggie Jackson and Mark McGwire with 37 each, STATS said.
Machado hustled for his 39th double. That's the second most before the All-Star break, trailing only the 42 by Edgar Martinez in 1996, STATS said.
Alexi Casilla hit an RBI double for a 3-0 lead in the second. Teagarden, starting while catcher Matt Wieters got a day off, had an RBI single in the fourth.
Cruz hit an RBI single in the Yankees' second. Ichiro Suzuki and Robinson Cano had RBI singles in the fifth that made it 4-all.
The gametime temperature was 91 degrees, and the steamy conditions took their toll.
Baltimore outfielders Nick Markakis and Nolan Reimold waited out a pitching change on one knee in the grass. Cano stepped out of the batter's box and glanced at the sky after the cloud cover seemed to distract him.
NOTES: The Orioles acquired INF-OF Alex Liddi from Seattle. Baltimore also got international signing slot No. 3 and sent the No. 2 spot to the Mariners. The 24-year-old Liddi was designated for assignment on June 28 after going 1 for 17 with Seattle. He'll join Triple-A Norfolk. ... Yankees RHP Hiroki Kuroda (7-6, 2.95) will start Sunday, bumping Phil Hughes back a day. Kuroda skipped a start because a tweaked hip flexor. RHP Jason Hammel (7-5, 5.19) pitches for the Orioles in the series finale. ... Yankees SS Derek Jeter was set to begin a rehabilitation assignment Saturday night for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. ... Orioles DH Brian Roberts batted fifth as a starter for the first time in his career. ... Also on the list of most homers by the All-Star break: Luis Gonzalez and Ken Griffey Jr. (35), Frank Howard (34) and Roger Maris , Sammy Sosa , Matt Williams , McGwire and Griffey, STATS said.