Series: Game 2 of 3

Series tied 1-1 (as of 4/22)

Game 1: Friday, April 21
NY Yankees5
Game 2: Saturday, April 22
NY Yankees6
Game 3: Sunday, April 23
NY Yankees7

Orioles 1

(11-8, 4-2 away)

Yankees 6

(8-8, 4-1 home)

1:05 PM ET, April 22, 2006

Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York 

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BAL 000010000 1 6 0
NYY 00110400 - 6 7 0

W: S. Chacon (2-1)

L: D. Cabrera (1-2)

Chacon puts chill on Orioles in Yankees' win

NEW YORK (AP) -- Johnny Damon calls Shawn Chacon "a very cool cat."

He wasn't talking about the weather.

Chacon pitched out of trouble for much of a raw, cold afternoon and resembled the pitcher who helped save the Yankees last year, leading New York over the Baltimore Orioles 6-1 Saturday.

Making his first start in 10 days, Chacon (2-1) gave up one run and four hits in seven innings, lowering his ERA from 8.03 to 5.59.

"He needed it. I think the team needed it," Alex Rodriguez said.

Chacon allowed runners in four of his first five innings before settling down to retire his final eight batters.

"Throughout the game, I always just keep in mind you're one pitch away from getting out of a jam," he said. "There's going to be days when I don't put myself in jams and it's a little smoother, but I take all the confidence in the world knowing I can get out of those jams."

After Baltimore put runners on second and third with one out in the third, Chacon got former AL MVP Miguel Tejada on a comebacker, then retired Jay Gibbons on a popup.

Trailing 2-0, Baltimore loaded the bases with one out in the fifth. Tejada hit a sacrifice fly before Chacon snagged Gibbons' sharp comebacker.

"He was coming right at us. He was challenging us," Gibbons said. "I felt we let him off the hook a couple of times, but he threw pretty good."

Chacon's chances to start have been limited in the early weeks of the season because of off days. In his prior starts, he gave up first-inning homers to the Los Angeles Angels' Orlando Cabrera and Kansas City's Reggie Sanders.

"Not giving up two-run homers in the first inning, that's always a bonus," Chacon said.

While he was low-key about his performance, Yankees manager Joe Torre said it gave the pitcher a mental lift.

"He was pretty proud of himself when he got out of there," Torre said.

Hideki Matsui got the big hit, a bases-loaded double that put the Yankees ahead 4-1 and chased Daniel Cabrera (1-2) with none out in the sixth inning, just before the rain resumed. The hit ended New York's 0-for-16 slide with the bases loaded.

On Friday night, Matsui took a called third strike on a 3-2 pitch with the bases loaded, ending New York's 6-5 loss. He wasn't thinking about that when he came up Saturday.

"The game could have gone either way at that point in time," he said through a translator.

It was only 48 degrees at gametime -- it felt colder -- and both starters had trouble gripping their breaking balls. Baltimore manager Sam Perlozzo was bothered that Cabrera didn't throw his curveball much in the early innings.

Cabrera, who entered with an AL-high 17 walks, displayed a great fastball -- he threw a 98 mph pitch past Gary Sheffield in the first -- but once again struggled with his command. He gave up six runs, five hits and five walks in five-plus innings, striking out five. His ERA jumped to 6.87.

"People have been talking about walks -- I walked people all my life. It's not new," Cabrera said. "I just try to throw strikes, and sometimes I don't."

Derek Jeter's RBI single in the third and Bernie Williams' sacrifice fly in the fourth built the 2-0 lead. After Matsui's hit in the four-run sixth, many of the remaining fans left -- the announced attendance was 50,872 but the crowd at its maximum appeared less than half that.

Johnny Damon hit a run-scoring infield single off John Halama that Tejada made a diving stop on in the shortstop hole but couldn't hold on to. Eddy Rodriguez came in and walked Jeter with the bases loaded.

Messy runs on a messy day.

"Those conditions out there were absolutely nasty," Alex Rodriguez said.

Game notes

In one of those meaningless baseball oddities, the Yankees are 7-0 in day games and 1-8 at night. ... Brian Roberts' third-inning steal made the Orioles 15-for-15 on stolen-base attempts this year. ... Chacon hadn't allowed a steal in his previous 17 appearances. ... Yankees C Kelly Stinnett grabbed Corey Patterson's fourth-inning foul ball on the third try, letting it pop up off his mitt twice.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press