Two homers from Aaron Judge, Gerrit Cole on the mound and the Orioles in The Bronx.
What could go wrong for the Yankees?
On Monday, no one else hit besides Judge, Cole gave up a season-high five runs and the Orioles, who entered having won three of four — all on walk-off hits — sent the Yankees to a third straight loss, 6-4, for the first time in 2022.
It seemed an especially unlikely outcome when the Yankees gave Cole a 2-0 lead in the second inning.
Cole had been 4-0 with a 1.67 ERA in his previous five starts — all Yankees wins.
He struck out a season-high 11 and didn’t walk a batter on Monday, but was done in by five hits in the Orioles’ four-run third.
Judge continued to terrorize opposing pitchers, drilling a solo shot with one out in the bottom of the first off Jordan Lyles — who was making his fourth start against the Yankees already this season.
It was a 112 mph laser that hit off the back of the visitors’ bullpen in left-center.
Judge added a second homer in the fifth to tie the game and has an MLB-best 17 on the season.
The Yankees took advantage of more Orioles’ mistakes in the second, as Lyles walked the struggling Aaron Hicks to lead off.
Estevan Florial followed with a grounder to first, where Ryan Mountcastle threw to second for the force, but shortstop Chris Owings missed the ball, which allowed Hicks to get all the way to third.
With runners on the corners and no one out, Jose Trevino singled up the middle to score Hicks and make it 2-0.
But they couldn’t add more, as after a failed bunt attempt, Marwin Gonzalez — filling in at third base — struck out and Anthony Rizzo grounded into a double play.
Cole retired the first six batters he faced before Ramon Urias led off the third with a double down the left-field line.
After a wild pitch, Robinson Chirinos boomed an RBI double to the gap in right-center to cut the Yankees’ lead to 2-1.
Cedric Mullins’ one-out single to left sent Chirinos to third before a wild pitch sent Urias to third. Mullins swiped second and Austin Hays’ two-run single to center put Baltimore ahead, 3-2.
Trey Mancini’s single to right was Baltimore’s fifth of the inning and caused pitching coach Matt Blake to pay Cole a visit. A Mountcastle force out drove in Hays to make it 4-2.
Cole rebounded in the fourth, striking out the side in order.
Isiah Kiner-Falefa hit a hard grounder past third to open the bottom of the fourth, but it was ruled foul by third-base umpire Doug Eddings. Replays seemed to indicate it was a fair ball. Kiner-Falefa struck out later in the at-bat.
Cole struck out the first two batters in the fifth before Rizzo made an error on a Hays grounder and Mancini singled on a flare to left before Cole ended the inning with another strikeout, this one of Mountcastle.
Judge’s second blast of the night, a two-run shot with one out in the fifth, tied the game at 4-4.
It was his fourth multi-homer game of the season.
But Cole allowed a two-out, opposite-field homer to Urias in the sixth to put the Yankees back in a one-run hole.
Rizzo reached on a flare single to left with two outs in the seventh, ending Lyles’ night.
Facing right-hander Felix Bautista, Judge walked, but Giancarlo Stanton struck out to end the threat.
Baltimore added an insurance run in the ninth off Wandy Peralta.
In the bottom of the inning against Jorge Lopez, Florial walked and pinch-hitter DJ LeMahieu grounded into a force out. Gonzalez hit into a double play to end it.