When the game started it looked like it would be a typical Yankees-Orioles game. The Yankees hit Sir Sydney Ponson hard in the first inning, but only managed one run, on a Gary Sheffield RBI single. Jose Contreras was sharp the first two innings, sending the Orioles down in order. 1-0 Yankees after two innings. The next seven innings went south in a hurry for the Bronx Bombers. Melvin Mora hit a two-out two RBI single in the 3rd inning. This was followed by back-to-back RBI singles from Miguel Tejada and Javy Lopez. That was all the Orioles would need, because Ponson was un-hittable the rest of the way and the O's ran away with a 9-1 win.
Ponson was the story of the night. After the first two innings, Ponson retired 16 straight batters. Matsui broke the streak with a single in the 8th inning. The Yankees could only muster 4 hits off of Ponson as he pitched a complete game. Jose Contreras on the other hand was doomed by one bad inning. He was pitching on three days' rest.
The four game series continues tonight at the stadium with Kevin Brown (7-1, 4.13) coming off the DL for a start against rookie Daniel Cabrera (8-4, 3.65). Saturday the Bombers will send Javier Vasquez (11-6, 4.06) to the hill against Eric Bedard (4-5, 4.42) in a 1:15pm start. The Series wraps up on Sunday afternoon with Orlando Hernandez (2-0, 2.37) against Rodrigo Lopez (8-6, 3.61).
Off the field, the Yankees had an extremely busy day. Kevin Brown was announced as Friday's starter. Jason Giambi still does not know what ails him, so he sat at home in bed. Alex Rodriguez and Tanyon Sturtze both received suspensions. Rodriguez for four games and Sturtze for three. Trot Nixon (3), Jason Varitek (4) and Gabe Kapler (3) all received for their part in Saturday's brawl at the Fens. All five players has issued appeals. Rumors persist that Kenny Lofton is on his way to the Philadelphia Phillies for Ricky Leedee. Randy Johnson has officially vetoed a trade to Los Angeles and says that he will only go to New York. It is believed that the Yankees will need to get a third team involved to make the trade work. Jose Contreras has been rumored to the Marlins as part of this deal. The trade Deadline is 4:00pm on Saturday. The Yankees more than likely will be involved in some sort of deal.