NEW YORK (AP) - Brett Gardner's reaction to making the final out said it all: He slammed his bat twice to the ground, smashing it into pieces.
``I didn't get any hits tonight, so it was time to retire it anyway,' Gardner said.
No doubt, the New York Yankees are feeling frustrated on this homestand after failing to take full advantage of some soft competition.
Jeremy Guthrie shut down the Yankees for seven innings, perhaps driving up his price in a trade, and the Baltimore Orioles got homers from Derrek Lee and Mark Reynolds in a 4-2 victory Friday night.
Kevin Gregg held on in a shaky ninth, striking out Gardner with runners at the corners to end it.
Robinson Cano and Nick Swisher opened the inning with consecutive doubles to cut the deficit to two. One out later, Jorge Posada walked and Russell Martin grounded into a force play. That brought up Gardner, who thought he walked on a close pitch before he went down swinging.
``It doesn't matter where it was at. I wasn't happy with it,' Gardner said. ``I wasn't happy swinging at the 1-0 pitch that was in the dirt, and you know, just frustrated with myself. We were putting together a good rally in the ninth inning, trying to make a good comeback, and it's never fun to be the guy that makes the last out going down swinging.'
Reynolds and Lee each drove in two runs, lending some rare offensive support to the major league leader in losses. Guthrie (5-14) allowed just four hits, including Mark Teixeira's solo homer, and walked three in one of his best outings during a difficult season.
The right-hander outpitched A.J. Burnett (8-9) for his first win in four career starts at Yankee Stadium. Last-place Baltimore won for the second time in 11 road games, improving to 1-6 against New York this year, as Guthrie moved to 2-7 away from home.
``Jeremy needed it. Jeremy's pitched well enough to have some more Ws next to his name, so I'm real proud of him tonight,' Baltimore manager Buck Showalter said. ``Everybody played well. There was a lot of intensity in a situation where some people may not have had it all the time.'
A durable starter considered a prime trade candidate before Sunday's non-waiver deadline, Guthrie handcuffed New York's dangerous lineup by consistently keeping the ball down. He got 12 outs on grounders and four of his five strikeouts came in his last two innings.
``I don't anticipate anything happening,' Guthrie said. ``I've said it before, 99 percent of what goes on or is talked about around trade deadline doesn't ever happen. So why would you ever worry about it or think about it?'
The 32-year-old Guthrie has sharp-looking wins over the Red Sox and Yankees in his past three starts. In between, he pitched pretty well in a loss to the Angels.
``Jeremy Guthrie's worth a lot. You saw what he's capable of today against a lineup like the Yankees,' Lee said. ``There's not a lot of great starting pitching that's available out there, so I'm sure he'd bring a good return.'
Koji Uehara, also potential trade bait, fanned two in a scoreless eighth for Baltimore - extending his shutout streak to 15 innings. He has not given up a run in 13 outings since June 19 at Washington.
Gregg pitched the ninth for his 17th save.
Burnett struck out 10 and yielded five hits in eight innings. He is 0-3 in five starts since beating Milwaukee on June 29.
New York fell to 4-3 on a 10-game homestand against three of the AL's worst teams: Oakland, Seattle and Baltimore.
``I gave all I could out there,' Burnett said. ``Where I'm at now, I feel fine. I can't wait to pitch the next game.'
In the opener of a four-game series, the start was delayed by rain for 1 hour, 49 minutes. The teams play a day-night doubleheader Saturday to make up an April 12 rainout.
Burnett walked Lee in the second and Reynolds hit the next pitch into the New York bullpen in right-center for his 22nd homer.
Vladimir Guerrero and Lee hit consecutive doubles to center in the fourth, making it 3-0.
Lee also homered to the opposite field on Burnett's first pitch with two outs in the sixth, sending a solo drive to the short porch in right. Lee began the night 2 for 11 (.182) with four strikeouts and no extra-base hits in his career against Burnett.
Teixeira connected for his 29th of the year in the bottom half.
NOTES: Baltimore plans to recall RHP Chris Tillman from Triple-A Norfolk to start the first game Saturday. LHP Zach Britton will return from Double-A Bowie to start the nightcap against another pitcher coming back up from the minors: Yankees RHP Ivan Nova was 8-4 when he was sent to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. ... Guthrie improved to 4-9 in 15 career starts against the Yankees. ... Burnett dropped to 12-5 in 20 starts against Baltimore. ... The Yankees activated reliever Rafael Soriano from the 60-day disabled list and optioned LHP Steve Garrison to Double-A Trenton. Manager Joe Girardi said he will ease Soriano into action slowly at first rather than thrust him right back into the pressure of an eighth-inning role. ... Yankees RHP Sergio Mitre was transferred from the 15-day DL to the 60-day DL. Mitre has been out since July 20 with tendinitis in his pitching shoulder.
The Associated Press News Service
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