Yanks' bullpen up to the task without Miller
Shreve, Wilson and Betances hold O's scoreless in series finale
BALTIMORE -- The Yankees' bullpen pecking order has been noticeably realigned over the last several weeks, and as they await the expected return of Andrew Miller next month, three of their late-inning arms provided some confidence on Sunday that the club is in good hands.
Chasen Shreve worked 1 1/3 scoreless innings in relief of starter Adam Warren and Justin Wilson pitched two sharp frames, setting up for closer Dellin Betances as the Yankees salvaged part of their weekend by hanging on for a 5-3 victory over the Orioles at Camden Yards.
"Like I said from the get-go, I'm going to pitch when [manager] Joe [Girardi] says my name over the phone," Wilson said. "It [stinks] we lost Andrew, but I'm excited to pitch in more meaningful innings. But they're all fun."
Warren was at 92 pitches on a humid afternoon when Girardi opted to summon the southpaw Shreve for left-handed hitter Travis Snider, whom Warren had retired in his first two at-bats.
Shreve got that job done and hung around for a scoreless sixth before issuing a walk to lead off the seventh. Shreve has not allowed a run in his last eight appearances (9 2/3 innings) and was credited with the victory, his third of the season.
"I just want to try to go out every time and throw strikes and hit my spots; try to ignore the situation," Shreve said. "The more pressure you put on yourself, the worse you're going to pitch. I try to just focus on the glove and hit my spots."
Fellow lefty Wilson put out that small fire with a strikeout, fielder's choice and lineout, then retired all three hitters he faced in the eighth, striking out a pair.
Shreve had to handle several right-handed batters: J.J. Hardy, Caleb Joseph and Manny Machado, retiring the first two and walking Machado. Wilson retired the right-handed-hitting Delmon Young, induced a fielder's choice on Adam Jones and struck out both Nolan Reimold and Hardy.
"I've said all along, these guys get righties and lefties out," Girardi said. "I don't worry that I'm bringing in two left-handers to face right-handers. It was just nice to have them rested. We had to ask them for a few more outs than you want to on a daily basis, but it worked."
They kept the two-run cushion intact for Betances, who worked around a five-pitch walk to Machado with two outs to lock down his third save of the season and his first since Miller was placed on the disabled list with a left forearm flexor muscle strain.
"I'm trying to stay the same. The only difference is that I'm shaking hands at the last out," Betances said. "I'm trying to stay the same. The job that Shreve and Wilson did is motivation to go out there and get it done."