Huff drives in 5 runs as Baltimore Orioles pound New York Yankees 12-0
NEW YORK (AP)—The New York Yankees are used to blowouts at home, just not this way.
Cabrera pitched two-hit ball into the seventh inning, Aubrey Huff hit a grand slam and the Orioles cooled off New York with a 12-0 win Tuesday night.
“We got big hits from a lot of different people but it’s pitching, especially here on the road playing here,” Orioles manager Dave Trembley said. “You just got to keep going at them because of the lineup they have and the approach that they take, especially in this ballpark.”
The sellout crowd mourned the loss of Rizzuto, who died in his sleep late Monday night. A sign hanging from the second deck above the third-base line read “A Tough Yankee Loss #10.”
The Yankees placed a wreath of flowers in front of Rizzuto’s plaque in Monument Park and showed highlights from his playing career and part of his Hall of Fame induction speech before the bottom half of the first inning.
Then the Yankees played their worst game of the year.
The Yankees had won four straight and nine of 10. They also had set a franchise record with 116 runs over their previous 10 home games, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
None of that mattered against Cabrera.
“He’s tough because he throws hard and when he lets the ball go he’s right next to you,” Robinson Cano said.
The loss matched the Yankees’ largest margin of defeat this season and was their worst shutout loss since Oakland beat them 12-0 on Sept. 2, 2005. It was their first shutout since Kansas City beat them 7-0 on July 26.
Cano and the rest of the Yankees will play the rest of this season with No. 10 on their left sleeves in honor of Rizzuto, who was at 89 the oldest living Hall of Famer.
Known as “The Scooter,” he played for the Yankees throughout the 1940s and ’50s, won seven World Series titles, was an AL MVP and played in five All-Star games. Rizzuto later announced Yankees games for four decades.
As for the game, it was all Orioles.
Kevin Millar homered and reached base five times for Baltimore, which improved to 17-13 since the All-Star break. Huff finished with a season-high five RBIs, Melvin Mora went 3-for-4 and Jay Payton drove in two runs.
“We got on them early,” Huff said. “That’s what you’ve got to keep doing. You’ve got to keep pounding runs against a team like that.”
Hideki Matsui’s fourth-inning single and Alex Rodriguez’s infield hit in the sixth was all New York could manage against the 6-foot-7 Cabrera (9-12), who struck out five and tied a season high with six walks in 6 2-3 innings.
“My fastball was working really well tonight and my breaking ball, too,” Cabrera said.
It was Cabrera’s first start at Yankee Stadium since he carried a no-hitter into the ninth inning Sept. 28. Cano had a one-out single in that one for New York’s only hit in a 7-1 loss.
Jeff Karstens (0-3) struggled with his control and only lasted three innings for New York. The right-hander got the spot start because manager Joe Torre juggled his rotation after Roger Clemens was suspended five games for hitting Toronto’s Alex Rios with a pitch on Aug. 7.
“Any time you put runners on without them having to hit you’re asking for trouble,” said Karstens, who walked four.
Nick Markakis doubled, Miguel Tejada walked and Millar singled in the third to load the bases for Huff, who hit an 0-1 pitch into the upper deck in right for his third career grand slam. Huff’s ninth homer of the season gave the Orioles a 5-0 lead.
“That’s probably one of the better balls I’ve hit this year,” said Huff, who tinkered with his swing recently.
Markakis, Huff, Mora and Brian Roberts each drove in a run in the sixth and Millar’s solo homer in the seventh made it 12-0.
Jim Brower, who replaced Karstens, was charged with six runs—four earned— and five hits in two-plus innings.
“That ballclub, in fact most ballclubs, are going to beat your brains out when you set them up in counts like we did,” said Torre, whose team is 26-9 at home since June 8.
Baltimore bounced back from a difficult loss in the series opener. The Orioles lost 7-6 Monday night when Derek Jeter’s infield grounder drove in the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning.
Millar went 3-for-3, walked twice and scored four times.
Orioles OF Jay Gibbons (torn labrum) had successful surgery on his injured left shoulder and is expected to be ready for spring training next year. … Torre said INF Wilson Betemit would start at second base Wednesday and Cano would get a day off. … Payton’s RBI single in the second inning snapped an 0-for-17 skid. … Clemens is scheduled to start Saturday against Detroit. … Melky Cabrera went 0-for-3 with two walks, ending his career-best 18-game hitting streak.