4-6 Yankees off to worst start since 1991

BALTIMORE (AP) -- If the Baltimore Orioles were successful in
their bid to sign Carl Pavano during the offseason, there might not
have been room in the rotation for Bruce Chen.

So far, the Orioles have reason to be thankful for Pavano's

Chen pitched a four-hitter, and Miguel Tejada and Sammy Sosa hit
successive homers to spark a seven-run sixth inning that carried
the Orioles past Pavano and the New York Yankees 8-1 Friday night.

After throwing 14 2/3 scoreless innings in spring training to
earn the final spot in the Orioles' rotation, Chen (1-1) opened the
season last week by allowing two earned runs in six innings at
Yankee Stadium.

For an encore Friday night, the left-hander struck out three and
walked one in his second career complete game in 70 starts. He
retired his first seven batters and 11 straight before Hideki
Matsui singled in the seventh.

"I'm very proud. The Yankees are a very tough team," Chen
said. "I felt like I was throwing strikes, changing speeds and
keeping the ball down. I felt really good."

He outpitched Pavano (0-2), who chose to sign with the Yankees
during the offseason after being courted as a free agent by the
Orioles. Both of Pavano's losses have come against the Orioles.

At 4-6 the Yankees are off to their worst start since 1991. With Alex Rodriguez at .205, Jason
Giambi at .219 and Tino Martinez hitting .182, New York is batting
.254 as a team.

Pavano yielded seven runs, three earned, and seven
hits in 5 2/3 innings.

"We didn't give him very much to work with," Yankees manager
Joe Torre said. "I can't say he ran out of gas; they just caught
up to him."

With the score tied in the sixth, Tejada and Sosa connected to
put the Orioles up 3-1. After an error by second baseman Rey
Sanchez, Luis Matos and Brian Roberts hit two-out RBI singles and
Tejada drew a bases-loaded walk from Felix Rodriguez.

Sosa then drove in two runs with a ground-rule double for an 8-1

"We had a good pitching duel out there," Chen said. "Then we
exploded in the sixth inning and gave me that cushion I needed."

Chen's only other complete game came last Sept. 13, a
five-hitter against Toronto.

Sosa's home run was the 576th of his career and second this
season, the first at Camden Yards since he joined the Orioles as a
free agent in February. He has now homered in 42 ballparks.

"It's not about that. It's about winning games," Sosa said.
"No question, what I like about this team is every day we're going
to have a new hero. We're comfortable with that."

Tejada and Sosa each had two hits and three RBI, and Roberts
went 3-for-5 to lift his batting average to .429.

"That's the best game we've played all year," Tejada said.

The Orioles are 3-1 against New York this season; last year they
started 0-7 against the Yankees and finished 5-14.

Bernie Williams drove in the lone run for the Yankees.

"We have a lot of people here who have been through this
before," Williams said. "It's too early to press. It will turn in
our favor because we have a lot of talent."

Torre agreed.

"It's tough after what, game 10, to say, 'Oh, my God. What's
going on?' " the manager said. "Unfortunately, when you're expected
to do a better job than we're doing, it becomes more of a

The Orioles went up 1-0 in the first when Melvin Mora hit a
one-out double and scored on a triple by Tejada, his seventh
straight game with an RBI.

New York tied it in the third. Martinez walked, went to second
on an infield hit by Sanchez and scored on a single by Williams.
The Yankees got only two more hits the rest of the way.

In the Orioles' half, Roberts hit a leadoff triple and Mora was
hit by a pitch before Tejada looked at a third strike, Sosa hit a
popup and Rafael Palmeiro grounded out.

Game notes
Roberts has hit safely in all 10 games this season. ... The
Yankees have trailed in nine of 10 games. ... It was the first time
in seven games the Orioles failed to get at least 10 hits. ...
Rodriguez has one hit in his last 16 at-bats, and Derek Jeter is in
a 2-for-18 skid.