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Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Notebook: Reynolds, no sleep & rotation

The first time the Yankees intentionally walked Nick Markakis to face Mark Reynolds with a runner in scoring position and two outs, the move resulted in a strikeout.

The second time they tried that maneuver, it cost them the game.

After intentionally walking Markakis in the 11th inning, reliever Hector Noesi served up a single to Reynolds that plated the winning run in the Orioles 5-4 win over the Yankees in 11 innings Wednesday. Reynolds finished 1-for-6, with that being his lone hit.

"Every time I throw a ball, I try to throw it down," Noesi said. "Sometimes you miss it. I just missed that one."

The first time the Yankees tried the move, it worked to perfection in the ninth inning with reliever Rafael Soriano striking out Reynolds to end the inning with two men aboard.

In the 11th, it didn't go so well. With one out, Eduardo Nunez committed an error allowing Matt Angle to reach and he would go on to steal second. After retiring Robert Andino, Markakis was walked to set-up the showdown with Reynolds, who had been 0-for-5 with four strikeouts at that point.

On the first pitch, Reynolds poked a single into center that scored Angle and gave the Orioles the 5-4 lead.

"We know he's an aggressive hitter, we know he wants to hit the fastball, right there it was just a slider, didn't have much action to it and he just caught it off the end of the ball and pulled it for a single," catcher Russell Martin said.

COULD USE SOME SLEEP: The Yankees and Orioles didn't get much sleep over the last two days following Tuesday's game that ran past 2 a.m. and Wednesday's afternoon start. It was a lot of baseball in not a lot of time and something the players are not accustomed to dealing with.

"It's been crazy. That's the first time I ever sat around for that long yesterday. Especially with the way the forecast was, there was 100 percent chance of rain, 24 hours a day," outfielder Nick Swisher said. "That's not our call, we always talk about control the things you can control and yesterday was completely out of our hands. Glad we played well last night and just couldn’t pull it off today."

5 OR SIX? WAIT FOR IT: If you're expecting any news on whether the rotation will be cut to five starters or remain at six, don’t expect Yankees manager Joe Girardi to divulge the details before the last minute. He said Wednesday that the six-man rotation has worked pretty well for the Yankees.

"It seems to keep our guys pretty fresh too," Girardi said. "We'll decide what we're going to do, I'm not going to commit one way or another to what we're going to do so we'll see."

FIRST AND 10: The Yankees begin a four-city, 10-game road trip that starts in Baltimore Thursday and will also have them visit Los Angeles, Seattle and Toronto. It could be a make-or-break trip in terms of how the Yankees finish in the American League East.

"We got a lot of games coming up, no doubt about that. We always talk about this team just whatever obstacles we have to overcome, we're going to do that. That's the tenacity of this team," Swisher said. "Either way, it is a little rough, no doubt about it, I think anyone would agree to that, but then again, these are the cards that you are dealt. You have to handle it the best way you can and just see how it all plays out."

STATS: The Yankees six-game win streak came to an end…The Yankees are 9-2 in their last 11…The Yankees are 13-4 vs. Baltimore…The Yankees  had 10,294 career hits and 1,387 career home runs on the bench today…The Yankees are 4-8 in extra-inning games…Alex Rodriguez snapped a 17-game stretch without multiple RBIs…Jesus Montero has hit safely in four of the last five games.