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Yankees ride Gerrit Cole’s arm, quick start to 3-2 win over Orioles

Yankees starting pitcher Gerrit Cole throws to an Orioles batter during the 1st inning.
Yankees starting pitcher Gerrit Cole throws to an Orioles batter during the 1st inning.
AP Photo/Terrance Williams

Gerrit Cole outpitched Jordan Lyles in a duel of veteran right-handers, and the New York Yankees squeezed past the skidding Baltimore Orioles 3-2 Wednesday night to clinch their ninth straight series win.

Gleyber Torres hit an RBI double and scored in a three-run first inning that propelled the Yankees to their 21st win in 24 games, including nine of their last 10. New York’s 28-9 start is tied for second-best in the majors since 1948, trailing only the 1984 Detroit Tigers at 32-5.

The Yankees will attempt to complete a four-game sweep of last-place Baltimore on Thursday afternoon. The Orioles, who have lost six straight, are the only team to take a series from the Yankees this season, winning two of three games in mid-April.

Cole (4-0) went seven innings, allowing two runs and six hits with five strikeouts. The 31-year-old is 4-0 with a 1.04 ERA in his last four starts against Baltimore.

For more coverage of Gerrit Cole and the Yankees, head to amNY.com

Clay Holmes worked the final two innings for the third save of his career, all this season and all against the Orioles.

Making his 190th career start and 297th appearance, Lyles (2-4) gave up three runs — two earned — and five hits over seven innings. He struck out eight, including Joey Gallo three times — Gallo’s eighth game this year with three or four strikeouts.

New York broke on top in the first when Torres followed two-out singles by Anthony Rizzo and Josh Donaldson with a run-scoring double. Then, on a wild pitch by Lyles, Donaldson scored and Torres came home on catcher Anthony Bemboom’s errant throw to the plate.

Baltimore closed to 3-2 sixth when Austin Hays hit an RBI double and scored on an infield grounder.

New York manager Aaron Boone filled out a starting lineup without stars Giancarlo Stanton and DJ LeMahieu, who were healthy but rested for a team in the midst of playing 23 games in 22 days.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Orioles: LHP John Means spoke to the media for the first time since undergoing Tommy John surgery late last month. Wearing a large brace on his left arm, the 2019 AL All-Star said, “Honestly, it’s going better than it’s supposed to be and my (arm) range is way ahead of schedule.” Means, who threw a no-hitter in Seattle last year, hopes to pitch again in 2023. … SS Jorge Mateo was back in the lineup for the first time since Sunday, when he bruised his shoulder and chest in a collision with Detroit’s Spencer Torkelson.

GREAT WALL

Annoyed that he lost a potential home run because the left-field wall at Camden Yards was moved back 26 1/2 feet since last year, New York’s Aaron Judge called the new dimensions “a travesty.” But Orioles manager Brandon Hyde, noting that routine fly balls used to be homers, countered Wednesday by saying, “It’s more fair than before.”

TRADE WINDS

Baltimore acquired RHP Luis Osorio from the Arizona Diamondbacks for LHP Paul Fry, who was designated for assignment on Saturday.

UP NEXT

Yankees: LHP Jordan Montgomery (0-1, 3.06 ERA) will start the series finale. He’s allowed two runs or fewer in each of his last six starts.

Orioles: LHP Bruce Zimmermann (2-2, 2.72) makes his eighth start of the season and second against the Yankees. In two career starts against New York, he’s got a 2.89 ERA over 9 1/3 innings.

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