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Hardy’s RBI Double In 13th Wins It For Baltimore – O’s Force Game 5

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J.J. Hardy’s RBI-double in the top of the 13th scored Manny Machado to break a 1-1 tie and proved to be the game-winner as the Orioles held on 2-1 to force a decisive Game 5 with the Yankees.

The two teams combined for just 15 hits and stranded 18 men on base.

Nate McLouth gave the O’s an early lead with a solo-shot off Phil Hughes – who allowed just four hits while striking out eight in 6 2/3 innings.

New York’s lone run was scored on a Robinson Cano RBI-ground out. While the Yankees’ second base drove in the run, he finished 0 for 6 on the night, one of several in Joe Girardi’s lineup who couldn’t buy a hit on the night.

Nick Swisher and Curtis Granderson were each 0 for 5 (Granderson struck out three times), Russell Martin was 0 for 4 with a walk, and Alex Rodriguez did have a hit, going 1 for 4 with two strikeouts.

For the second straight night, Girardi pinch-hit for A-Rod in a situation where the Yanks were down to their final at-bats, trailing by a run. Raul Ibanez filled in for A-Rod on Wednesday, but in the 13th on Thursday night/Friday morning, Eric Chavez lined out to third to end it.

Ibanez had another chance at heroics in the ninth, pinch-hitting for Jason Nix, but Ibanez grounded out.

Nix was 2 for 3, Derek Jeter added two hits in six at-bats. Mark Teixeira, Ichiro Suzuki and Rodriguez each added one.

David Robertson and Joba Chamberlain each through a scoreless inning in relieft with Rafael Soriano threw a pair of scoreless frames.

Chamberlain was pulled in the 11th after allowing a lead-off bloop single to Chris Davis. Davis’ bat broke and speared, flying out the to the mound and hitting Joba in his throwing elbow – he left the game with visible swelling.

Game 5 is Friday at 5:07 p.m. with C.C. Sabathia scheduled to start against Baltimore’s Jason Hammel.

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