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Uehara dazzles as Orioles beat Yankees again

JAPANESE pitcher Koji Uehara made a strong impression in his Major League debut as the Baltimore Orioles won their second successive game against the New York Yankees 7-5 on Wednesday.

Uehara, a 34-year-old right hander, completed five innings while allowing just one run and one walk in his first professional game in the United States.

"I think I was tenacious," the eight-time Japanese All-Star said. "I'm really happy. Right before the game, I was a little bit hyper but right now, I'm pretty calm."

The Orioles offense supported the rookie with a five-run fourth inning, capped by Nick Markakis' two-run home run.

Markakis, the team's young outfielder who was signed to a contract extension in the offseason, also added an RBI double in the first, and finished 3-for-3 with two runs scored.

New York captain Derek Jeter went 2-for-4 with a two-run homer in the ninth inning where the Yankees scored three late runs.

Mark Teixeira's RBI single off Dennis Sarfate made it 7-5 and was the first baseman's first hit as a Yankee.

New York starter Wang Chien-ming lasted less than four innings, allowing seven runs and walking three.

The Yankees have dropped the first two games of their three-game series with Baltimore, echoing the team's poor start last year. After staggering to a 14-15 record last April, the Yankees missed the postseason for the first time since 1994.

In the season opener, New York was routed 10-5, as offseason acquisitions CC Sabathia and Teixeira failed to fire.

Uehara, plucked from overseas to be Baltimore's second starting pitcher, was cushioned early as the Orioles bolted to a 2-0 lead after the first innings.

"He has got to be relieved that we can turn the page on this first one," said Orioles manager Dave Trembley. "He's got to feel proud of what he did."

In Anaheim, California, pinch-hitter Nomar Garciaparra, Mark Ellis and Matt Holliday hit RBI singles with two outs in the ninth inning off new closer Brian Fuentes, rallying Oakland 6-4 over Los Angeles.

In other American League action, it was: Rays 7, Red Sox 2; Tigers 5, Blue Jays 1; Royals 2, White Sox 0; Twins 6, Mariners 5; and Rangers 8, Indians 5.

In Philadelphia, four Phillies walked with the bases loaded during an eight-run seventh inning as Philadelphia rallied for a 12-11 victory over the Atlanta Braves in the National League.

Raul Ibanez hit a two-run homer, helping the World Series champions overcome a 10-3 deficit and avoid a three-game sweep on the day they received their 14-karat, 103-diamond championship rings.

Brian McCann and Jordan Schafer hit two-run homers for the Braves, and Javier Vazquez left with a seven-run lead after pitching six effective innings in his first start with his new team. Blaine Boyer (0-1) issued two of the bases-loaded walks in the seventh and got the loss.

Also, it was: Marlins 6, Nationals 4; Rockies 9, Diamondbacks 2; Dodgers 5, Padres 2; Cubs 11, Astros 6; Mets 9, Reds 7; Brewers 4, Giants 2; Pirates 7, Cardinals 4; and Rockies 9, Diamondbacks 2.


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