New York Yankees fans know how good last night's 3-2 extra-inning win felt, so it's easy to imagine how distraught Baltimore Orioles supporters are with their season one game from being over.
Raul Ibanez won the game for the Yankees with a pair of homers after being called in as a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the ninth, causing Camden Chat to title their postgame recap: "Raul Ibanez. Really."
The Orioles fell to the Yankees today in a game that was perhaps the most heartbreaking I can ever remember watching.
Ibanez' performance stole the show, but the Orioles can blame their loss on more than just preposterously clutch hitting. The team lost on a pair of solo shots, but they were only in a position to do so because their only runs on the evening had come by the way of one-run homers as well. Their No. 8 and No. 9 hitters, Ryan Flaherty and Manny Machado, went deep off of Hiroki Kuroda, but the Yankees' starter shut down the rest of the team pretty well:
What wasn't fun to watch tonight was the Orioles offense. J.J. Hardy, Chris Davis, Adam Jones, Matt Wieters, Jim Thome, and Mark Reynolds went a combined 2-for-26. That's your 2-7 hitters, folks.
So after a great outing by starter Miguel Gonzalez, the O's turned to their closer, Jim Johnson, who gave up five runs, four earned in just .1 innings in Game 1. Ibanez made him pay.
I don't know what's going on with Jim Johnson; after being so reliable this season he's now given up runs in two of the three games this series.
New York has two chances to end the Orioles' season at Yankee Stadium, beginning tonight at 7:37 p.m. ET.