Machado’s walk-off blast lifts Orioles over Yankees
BALTIMORE — The Baltimore Orioles often rely heavily on home runs. They did it again Tuesday night, with the biggest one coming from Manny Machado.
Machado hit a two-run homer off Dellin Betances with two outs in the bottom of the ninth to give Baltimore a 7-6 victory over the New York Yankees
Betances (3-6) retired the first two batters in the ninth before walking Tim Beckham. Machado then hit his second homer of the night — on a 1-0 pitch — to left-center.
“I’m just looking for something up I can do damage with,” Machado said about his at-bat in the ninth. “I’m up in the count. Just looking for a good pitch I can hit.”
The third baseman got a breaking pitch that he sent over the fence in left-center. It was the team’s fourth home run of the game, a big reason the Orioles rallied from an early 6-1 deficit.
Betances threw a lot of breaking pitches in the ninth and said the one he fed Machado did not move enough.
“It just stood over the plate, didn’t do much, and he got the best of me,” Betances said. “Maybe I threw too many there, but that one just hung.”
This was a big victory for the Orioles (71-68), who are drawing closer in the fight for the second American League wild-card spot.
“This is a huge game for us,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “This is the time of the year, if you’re going to make a push, we need to do it now. It was a picture-perfect inning. You couldn’t ask for anything more.”
Zach Britton (2-0) pitched a scoreless ninth for Baltimore and earned the victory, the 1,500th of Showalter’s career.
Didi Gregorius and Jacoby Ellsbury each hit two-run singles to spark a six-run second inning that gave the Yankees (74-64) a big early lead.
The Orioles came back to cut the deficit to 6-5 on Mark Trumbo’s two-run homer in the sixth off CC Sabathia but didn’t get another hit until Machado’s game-winning blast.
Sabathia gave up three homers in 5 1/3 innings. He allowed five runs on eight hits and left with a 6-5 lead.
Baltimore starter Jeremy Hellickson dealt with control issues and lasted only 2 1/3 innings. He gave up five runs (three earned), four walks and two hits.
“That’s just not the guy we’ve seen here and have seen before in his career,” Showalter said. “He just never got in that sequence where he had a feel for two pitches, let alone one.”
The Orioles manufactured a run in the first inning after the 2-hour, 14-minute rain delay pushed back the start.
Jonathan Schoop walked and later scored on a Trey Mancini soft infield single to short, giving Baltimore a 1-0 lead.
The Yankees scored six in the third, set up by two Hellickson walks, a hit batter and an error. Gregorius gave New York the lead with a two-run single off Hellickson, who was replaced by Richard Bleier after walking Matt Holliday to load the bases.
Center fielder Adam Jones then dropped a Greg Bird fly ball. Jones got an error, Bird was credited with a sacrifice fly, and New York led 3-1. Todd Frazier’s groundout added one more run before Ellsbury followed with a two-run single for a 6-1 lead.
Machado hit a solo homer off Sabathia in the third that made it 6-2. Schoop added another solo shot in the fifth that cut the lead to three.
The Orioles kept on pushing and were able to set up Machado for the game-winning homer in the ninth. He now leads Baltimore with 32 home runs.
“Machado’s a guy that you know can change the complexion of a game with one swing, but I still have a ton of confidence in Dellin, his stuff and his ability,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “He just hung one.”
NOTES: 1B Chris Davis was named as Baltimore’s 2017 nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award on Tuesday. LF Brett Gardner was picked for the second straight year as the Yankees’ nominee. ... The Orioles called up OF Austin Hays from Double-A Bowie. ... This was the 22nd anniversary of Cal Ripken tying Lou Gehrig’s record of consecutive games by playing in his 2,130th straight contest in 1995. ... New York called up 1B Tyler Austin from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.