In an intense game that came down to the wire, the O's prevailed, topping the Yankees 5-4 on Monday night in New York.
Miguel Gonzalez (3-2) continued to impress on the road, allowing four runs on six hits (three were solo homers) in 6 2/3 innings. Gonzalez set a new career-best with eight strikeouts, walking none in the 111-pitch effort. Gonzalez clearly ran out of gas in the sixth, and was pulled after allowing back-to-back solo homers after recording two outs.
Wilson Betemit put the Birds on the board with a solo homer in the third, and the O's added another two runs in the fifth and two more in the seventh...they would need all of them.
Jim Johnson came on in the ninth to preserve the one-run lead, and promptly gave up a lead-off double...things looked bleak. But Johnson struck out Russell Martin for the final out, stranding runners on second and third and notching his AL-best 31st save in the process.
The O's (54-49) are now 6 1/2 games behind the division-leading Yankees and are two games out in the Wild Card race. Chris Tillman looks to win his third straight game when he takes the mound Tuesday night.