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Bird, Holliday dingers fuel red-hot Yankees

NY cruises to 7-1 spring record; Chapman sharp in debut
MLB.com @BryanHoch

TAMPA, Fla. -- Matt Holliday, Greg Bird and Billy McKinney homered as the Yankees rolled to their seventh Grapefruit League victory in eight contests, defeating a split-squad Orioles lineup, 8-1, on Thursday night at George M. Steinbrenner Field.

Holliday hit a second-inning solo shot off Baltimore starter Tyler Wilson, and Bird launched a two-run shot -- his third of the exhibition season -- facing Joe Gunkel in the fourth inning. Gary Sanchez added a run-scoring single in the fifth, and McKinney cracked a three-run shot off Oliver Drake in the seventh.

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TAMPA, Fla. -- Matt Holliday, Greg Bird and Billy McKinney homered as the Yankees rolled to their seventh Grapefruit League victory in eight contests, defeating a split-squad Orioles lineup, 8-1, on Thursday night at George M. Steinbrenner Field.

Holliday hit a second-inning solo shot off Baltimore starter Tyler Wilson, and Bird launched a two-run shot -- his third of the exhibition season -- facing Joe Gunkel in the fourth inning. Gary Sanchez added a run-scoring single in the fifth, and McKinney cracked a three-run shot off Oliver Drake in the seventh.

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"It's looked really good," said Yankees manager Joe Girardi. "I know it's only a week, but balls are jumping off bats, guys are moving runners over, getting them in. Everyone is contributing. Guys are getting on base, big guys are hitting home runs. A lot of loud noises for the first week of Spring Training."

Video: BAL@NYY: Holliday smacks an opposite-field dinger

Caleb Joseph hit a solo home run, his first of the spring, off Yankees starter Adam Warren in the third inning. It was the only hit permitted by Warren, who worked three innings with a walk and three strikeouts, throwing 26 of 42 pitches for strikes.

"I felt really good today, using all my pitches," Warren said. "I felt like all of them were quality offspeed offerings. The home run was a two-seamer, a pitch I've been toying around with to righties. It leaked over the plate, and that's something I've got to learn with that. I've had some good results as well."

Video: BAL@NYY: Warren discusses his start vs. the Orioles

Holliday's homer was the only blemish in three innings against Wilson, who walked none and struck out two. Wilson threw 25 of 38 pitches for strikes.

Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman made his first game appearance since Game 7 of the World Series, hurling a perfect fourth inning with two strikeouts.

Chapman's focus on slider, changeup in spring

Video: BAL@NYY: Chapman strikes out Dickerson swinging

WHAT'S NEXT
Orioles: The O's travel to Bradenton to face the Pirates on Friday at 1:05 p.m. ET (listen live on Gameday Audio). Left-hander Wade Miley is scheduled to make his second start of the spring.

Yankees: The Yankees are on the road Friday, set to visit the Blue Jays in Dunedin at 1:05 p.m. ET (watch live on MLB.TV). Right-hander Luis Severino will make his second spring start for New York, facing Toronto for the second time. The Jays counter with left-hander Francisco Liriano in a game that will be televised on MLB Network.

Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and on Facebook.

Greg Bird, Matt Holliday