Mussina Shuts Out O's For Sweep

Mike Mussina was brilliant on Sunday as he pitched a complete-game shutout against his former teammates and led the Yankees to a four-game sweep of the Baltimore Orioles. Karim Garcia provided the offense behind the Moose, picking up three hits – including a homerun – and three RBI.

Mussina (14-6) won his fourth straight decision and now hasn't lost since July 12. For the second consecutive start he didn't allow a run, and the Moose hasn't been scored upon in his last 20 1/3 innings dating back to August 7. The righty allowed just three hits to the Orioles while striking out nine without walking a batter.

The Yankees picked up all the runs they would need in the first inning on Derek Jeter's RBI single. Alfonso Soriano led off the inning with a double and scored on Jeter's hit. The Yankee captain picked up three more hits to bring his season average up to .322 and extend his hitting streak to eight games.

New York broke the game open in the fourth inning. Hideki Matsui grounded out to shortstop to score a run. Then, after an intentional walk to Jorge Posada, Aaron Boone reached on an infield single to score Jason Giambi from third. Garcia followed that with an RBI single to put the Yanks up 4-0.

Garcia's solo homerun in the seventh gave the Yanks a 5-0 lead. He struck again in the eighth inning when he hit a ground-rule double to score a run and cap a three-run Yankee rally.

Mussina faced the minimum through the first three innings before allowing a single to Brian Roberts to lead off the fourth. Mussina worked out of trouble in that inning, the only pressure he faced for the entire game. With two on and one out, Mussina induced Jay Gibbons and Tony Batista to fly out harmlessly.

Rodrigo Lopez (5-8) took the loss for the Orioles, who have now lost seven straight games. Lopez lasted four innings and allowed four runs on six hits and three walks. He struck out just one before giving way to the bullpen.

The Yankees wrapped up their short road trip with a final record of 5-2, which is excellent by any stretch of the imagination. With a 42-23 mark, the Yankees have the best road record in the Major Leagues.

Next for the Yankees is a three-game series at Yankee Stadium with the Royals. The Yanks dropped two of three to Kansas City before the Baltimore series, and would like some revenge. Game one of the series is on Monday at 7:05 pm. Jeff Weaver (6-9, 5.78) gets the start for the Yankees. Jose Lima (7-0, 2.96) will take the mound for the Royals.

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