NEW YORK (AP) — J.J. Hardy just wants to get out of New York and forget this series.
The Orioles lost the last three games of a four-game set in the span of about 27 hours, and Hardy spent the weekend going 0 for 17 and making two errors.
His last one was a doozy, too. He missed a double-play ball that opened the door for Brett Gardner to hit a bases-loaded triple and help New York Yankees beat Baltimore 4-2 Sunday.
“The first couple of games, I hit the ball hard and didn’t get any hits out of them,” Hardy said. “And then, in these last two games, these are games I want to forget about and move on. We’ve got an off day tomorrow and we’ve got Kansas City. Got to look forward to that series.”
Freddy Garcia (10-7) struck out six in six innings and allowed two runs on five hits to send the Yankees 22 games over .500, their highest point of the season.
Baltimore’s Jake Arrieta (10-8) walked six batters in five innings, giving up five hits along with four runs. Only two of the runs were earned.
“Six walks, hit by pitch, and the runs he gave up weren’t usually enough to get you beat,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “Not a lot offensively, but if he could cut down on the walks, he could get a lot deeper in games and be a lot more valuable pitcher for us.”
The Orioles have lost six of their last seven and 18 times in 24 games.
Adam Jones put the Orioles up early with an RBI single on a hit-and-run in the third inning. Derek Jeter went far to his left at shortstop to reach Jones’ hopper up the middle, but his throw to second was off and couldn’t get Nick Markakis in time.
Gardner came to bat after Eric Chavez walked to lead off the fourth, Russell Martin reached on Hardy’s error and Eduardo Nunez singled. Gardner slowed imperceptibly to glance into the right-field corner as he rounded second, then motored straight into third to give the Yankees the lead with his sixth triple this season.
“I think I just tried to be too quick. I came up on it, and you can’t give those guys five outs in one inning,” Hardy said. “It’s too good of a lineup. I thought Jake threw the ball really well today, and that play right there pretty much cost us the game.”
Showalter is just as eager to forget about Hardy’s misadventures in the Bronx.
“J.J. spoiled us with a great level of play,” Showalter said. “I know J.J. will take the day off and come back and pick up where we know he’s capable of performing, a high level of play. It’s been physically challenging the last three days, too, and my guess if anybody deserves (a day off), it’s J.J.”
Baltimore’s Chris Davis, acquired the day before in a trade for Koji Uehara, arrived Sunday morning and played first base. He went 0 for 4, striking out in his first at-bat. The Orioles, who struck out 10 times overall, also acquired right-hander Tommy Hunter in the deal, and he will join the team in Kansas City.
Jeter left after getting hit by a pitch, but X-rays only showed a bruised right middle finger. Manager Joe Girardi said he didn’t expect to be without the Yankees captain for too long.
“I’m not expecting it to be a week,” Girardi said. “Could it be a day, or two? I think it could be.”
New York improved its major league best record in day games to 31-7 and won for the 20th time in its last 26 home games.
Yankees reliever David Robertson struck out the side in the eighth and pitched 1 1/3 innings of perfect relief overall before Mariano Rivera pitched the ninth for his 27th save in 31 chances.
Vladimir Guerrero hit an RBI single in the sixth inning and Robert Andino stole three bases for the Orioles.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)