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Friday, July 5, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Yankees 3, Orioles 2

By Ian Begley

NEW YORK -- All is Wells in the Bronx.

Vernon Wells ripped a game-winning single to left with the bases loaded to give the New York Yankees a 3-2 come-from-behind win over the Baltimore Orioles.

The Yankees put across two runs in the bottom of the ninth after sleepwalking through the first eight innings.

In the process, they helped out Ivan Nova, who earned the win with a masterful complete game.

WHAT IT MEANS: The Yankees have won five in a row. The win snapped a five-game losing streak against the Orioles.

NASTY NOVA: Good luck trying to keep Nova out of the pitching rotation after his performance on Friday night.

Nova allowed just three hits to the O's in a complete-game gem.

He was about six inches from shutting Baltimore out. But Matt Wieters' drive to left hit the top of the wall and bounced in the stands for a two-run homer.

Nova struck out 11 Orioles and walked just one to lower his ERA to 4.09. Joe Girardi was looking for a chance to start Nova again after he pitched well against Tampa late last month, and got the opportunity when Hiroki Kuroda was scratched with a hip injury.

Now, it looks like Girardi will have to find another start for Nova.

NINTH-INNING RALLY: David Adams singled to right off Baltimore's Jim Johnson to start the ninth.

Brett Gardner laid down what was supposed to be a sacrifice bunt to get Adams to second. But Johnson couldn't handle the bunt and both Gardner and Adams were safe.

Ichiro Suzuki bunted both runners over to bring up Robinson Cano.

Buck Showalter decided to intentionally walk Cano for the second time to bring up (can you blame him?) Travis Hafner with the bases loaded and none out.

Hafner walked, setting up Wells' heroics.

BAILED OUT IN THE NINTH: Before the ninth inning, the Yanks' bats were silent -- again.

This isn't as troubling given the final score of the game, but offense has been an issue for this team all year.

The Yanks left 10 runners on base and went 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position in the first eight innings. Hafner left five on base on his own against Balitmore starter Miguel Gonzalez.

WHAT'S NEXT: The Yanks have two more this weekend against Baltimore. They are in a stretch of 20 straight games with no off days until the All-Star break. The good news? They play 11 of their final 14 games before the break against teams under .500.