Final

Series: Game 3 of 3

NY Yankees won 2-1

Game 1: Tuesday, June 22
NY Yankees10Final
Baltimore4
Game 2: Wednesday, June 23
NY Yankees2Final
Baltimore13
Game 3: Thursday, June 24
NY Yankees5Final
Baltimore2

Yankees 5

(45-25, 22-16 away)

Orioles 2

(29-39, 16-20 home)

7:05 PM ET, June 24, 2004

Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore, Maryland 

123456789 R H E
NYY 002020010 5 10 0
BAL 200000000 2 9 3

W: J. Vazquez (8-5)

L: S. Ponson (3-10)

S: M. Rivera (28)

New York sends Ponson to 10th loss

BALTIMORE (AP) -- Lee Mazzilli knows the New York Yankees well enough to realize they aren't going to lose many games when the opposition makes three errors, runs recklessly on the bases and yields a home run on an 0-2 pitch.

Contreras family in New York area
NEWARK, N.J. -- Yankees pitcher Jose Contreras and his family landed in the New York area Thursday, two days after they were reunited in South Florida.

The family arrived at Newark Liberty International Airport shortly after 4 p.m. and left without addressing reporters. Contreras lives at an apartment in New Jersey during the season.

Contreras' wife, Miriam Murillo, and the couple's two daughters, Naylan, 11, and Naylenis, 3, defected to the United States from Cuba on Monday. They gathered together Tuesday in Miami Beach.

The family's departure was delayed by a day because of an immigration paperwork problem.

The Yankees finished up a series in Baltimore on Thursday. Contreras was expected to rejoin the team Friday and then start Saturday at Yankee Stadium against the Mets.

Asked whether he would closely monitor Contreras in that upcoming game, Yankees manager Joe Torre said, "We'll keep an eye on him."
-- Associated Press

Mazzilli watched the Baltimore Orioles do all that Thursday night, and that's why he sat dejectedly in the manager's office in the wake of a 5-2 defeat.

Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter homered to back a solid pitching performance by Javier Vazquez, and the Yankees capitalized on several miscues in improving to 8-1 against the Orioles this season.

The victory enabled New York to finish 5-4 on a trip through Arizona, Los Angeles and Baltimore. The Yankees opened a 5{-game lead over Boston in the AL East, matching their season high.

"It's good to win this game because you had a winning road trip," manager Joe Torre said. "It was a tough road trip for us, but to pick up ground while you're on the road is a pretty good feeling."

Rodriguez hit a two-run shot in the third inning to tie the game following an error by Orioles third baseman David Newhan, and Jeter gave New York the lead for good in the fifth with a two-run drive on an 0-2 pitch.

Both homers came off Sidney Ponson (3-10), who lost his seventh straight start.

Ponson pitched well, but he received no offensive support after the Orioles scored two runs in the first inning. Larry Bigbie got picked off first base in the second inning and Brian Roberts was doubled up trying to tag up from first in the seventh.

That was enough to send Baltimore to its ninth loss in 11 games.

"I'll say this a thousand times, when you make errors and give good teams that extra chance, stuff like that is going to happen," said Mazzilli, who coached first base for the Yankees from 1999-03.

Ponson, winless since May 16, gave up only two earned runs and seven hits in seven innings, but fell to 3-11 against the Yankees.

"He had good velocity, he mixed his pitches well," Mazzilli said. "He just left one pitch up, that 0-2 to Jeter."

Ponson refused to talk to reporters, a practice that has become commonplace during his career-tying seven-game skid.

"He pitched a tremendous game," Orioles catcher Javy Lopez said. "But the Yankees are a good team. You make one mistake against them, you pay."

Vazquez (8-5) allowed nine hits in seven innings. The right-hander is 5-1 in his last seven starts.

"Even though I battled and it seemed like I had guys on base every inning, my stuff was much better," Vazquez said.

Tom Gordon followed with one scoreless inning and Mariano Rivera worked a perfect ninth for his 28th save in 29 chances.

Newhan hit a two-run homer for the Orioles, but his error led to two unearned runs.

The game drew 48,442 fans -- the second sellout of the three-game series and the Orioles' fourth this year.

Rodriguez got New York started with his 18th homer, two pitches after Newhan threw wildly to first on a two-out grounder by Jeter.

"One swing for the night I'm happy with," Rodriguez said. "That's about it."

With the score tied at 2 in the fifth, Jeter connected after Kenny Lofton reached on an infield hit. It was Jeter's fifth homer in 55 career at-bats against Ponson.

"I don't know if he has his number," Torre said. "Ponson will challenge people and he threw the first two fastballs by him. He tried to do it with the third one and Derek hit the home run."

The Orioles put runners at second and third with two outs in the sixth before Vazquez retired Jerry Hairston on a foul pop.

New York went up 5-2 in the eighth when Bernie Williams drove in a run with a blooper to left that turned into a force play at second.

Game notes


Yankees OF Ruben Sierra was available only as a pinch-hitter, one night after fouling a ball off his left foot. ... Vazquez had issued only one leadoff walk in 98 innings before walking Roberts in the first. ... Orioles 3B Melvin Mora missed his sixth straight game with a sprained ligament in his left foot.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

SPONSORED HEADLINES