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CC Sabathia, Yankees fall to Orioles, 4-3

Delmon Young slides under Brian McCann's tag safely to give the Orioles a 3-0 lead.Patrick Semansky/AP

Delmon Young slides under Brian McCann’s tag safely to give the Orioles a 3-0 lead.


BALTIMORE — So much for momentum.

After Sunday’s offensive explosion and Monday’s dramatic late-inning win, the Yankees had every reason to feel good about themselves when they took the field Tuesday night at Camden Yards.

But the bats went cold, CC Sabathia was lukewarm at best and the Yankees looked uninspired, dropping a 4-3 decision to the Orioles on a chilly, damp night in the Inner Harbor.

Sabathia posted another mediocre start, allowing four runs on seven hits and one walk over seven innings. Aside from a first-inning Adam Jones home run, the lefty wasn’t hit hard by Baltimore’s lineup, but the Orioles did more than enough to drop the former ace to 0-2.

“I thought he pitched well,” Joe Girardi said. “It’s unfortunate that he gave up four runs. I thought he pitched better than that.”

CC Sabathia goes seven innings, but allows four runs on seven hits.Rob Carr/Getty Images

CC Sabathia goes seven innings, but allows four runs on seven hits.

The Yankees didn’t do much to help the starter, managing only one run over seven innings against righthander Miguel Gonzalez (1-1), who struck out a career-high 10 batters. The Yankees were 1-for-5 with runners in scoring position against Gonzalez and 1-for-8 overall.

“He pitched really well,” Mark Teixeira said. “When he needed to make big pitches, he did. It’s not like he needed to get out of too many jams, but he did when he needed to.”

Not even Alex Rodriguez could save the Yankees (3-5).

Down to their final out after pulling within a run during a two-run eighth, the Yankees sent A-Rod in to pinch-hit for Stephen Drew, Monday night’s hero. There were no heroics for A-Rod, however, as closer Zach Britton got him to ground out to nail down the victory for Baltimore (4-4).

Sabathia and Didi Gregorius each committed an error to give the Yankees a league-high 11 this season, though neither led to a Baltimore run.

Jones continued to swing one of the hottest bats in the majors, putting the Orioles on the board in the first inning with a solo homer to left off Sabathia. Jones already has four homers this season.

“He’s one of the best hitters in the game,” Sabathia said. “He got a two-seamer and put a good swing on it.”

Sabathia’s own fielding miscues put him in a jam in the second as he failed to make it to first base in time to cover on a potential double play, then committed a throwing error with two out on Caleb Joseph’s dribbler down the first-base line.

“It’s just being 34 years old,” Sabathia said, adding that it had nothing to do with his surgically repaired right knee. “Four years ago, I probably could have made that play.”

The big lefthander got out of the inning without any damage, but Baltimore added to its lead in the third on a sac fly to right by Jones. Joseph tacked on a two-out RBI single to right in the fourth, stretching the lead to 3-0. That proved to be plenty for Gonzalez. The righty allowed a two-out double to right by Carlos Beltran in the first, then another in the second, this one off the bat of Chris Young. Drew walked to put two men on base, but Gregorius struck out to end the threat.

Gonzalez went on to retire 10 straight Yankees as his team built the three-run lead.

The Yankees finally got on the board in the sixth on Teixeira’s double to right, cutting the deficit to 3-1. But Gonzalez retired Brian McCann to hold the lead, then struck out the side in the seventh. “He wasn’t in the middle of the plate at all tonight,” Girardi said. “He was not missing his spots.”

The Orioles scored again in the seventh on Joseph’s triple — a fly ball that got past a diving Jacoby Ellsbury — and Everth Cabrera’s sac fly to center, the fourth different frame during which they pushed a run across against Sabathia. “Giving up that triple to lead off the inning made the difference in the game,” Sabathia said. “I need to make a better pitch there.”

The Yankees rallied for two runs in the eighth against Kevin Gausman, one coming on an error by Alejandro De Aza, who dropped a fly ball in left field. But Britton came in and got McCann to hit a hard grounder into the shift and strand the tying run in scoring position — the final man the Yankees would have on base.  

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