The Yankees played another one of those games on Wednesday night.
Thankfully, that game came in the middle of another, better game and they were able to escape Camden Yards with a 4-1 win in 15 innings. That meant the Yankees avoided a loss that would have sucked all the goodwill earned on Tuesday right out of the room.
That's what happens when Mariano Rivera blows a save in a 1-0 game after another brilliant piece of work by Bartolo Colon. Colon allowed just three hits over eight innings to hand the game to Rivera and then everyone watched in horror as the great one blew a save to the Orioles for the second time this season.
If the Yankees lost, that's your headline and we have our third member of the dynastic core threatening to hop into the hot tub at the retirement village everyone wants to build in the clubhouse. We can put that on the back burner, though, because of a guy who was eight when Rivera's big league career got underway.
Hector Noesi has been like the fifth Beatle this season. He was summoned from Triple-A for 10 days in April but never got into a game and had not pitched since a second call-up on May 13th.
Girardi finally called his number in the 12th inning on Wednesday on a night when the bullpen A-list, such as it is, got the night off. Luis Ayala pitched parts of two innings and Boone Logan finished off the 11th with Mark Teixeira's defense keeping the game alive after a bad throw by Alex Rodriguez.
Then came Noesi who earned a win in his first big league appearance with four shutout innings as the game went into the witching hour. He walked a tight rope to get there, four hits and four walks, but get there he did once the Yankee offense finally returned to the scene.
The Yanks scored a run on a sacrifice fly in the fourth inning and then pretty much took the rest of the night off in a performance that, like Rivera's, would elicit moans and groans had the team lost. A three-run 14th, highlighted by a two-run Robinson Cano double, and four Alex Rodriguez hits over the course of the evening make it easier to ignore the long rough patch.
There was more craziness as the game lurched toward midnight. Chris Dickerson got beaned in the head after Cano's double, leading to the ejection of Orioles pitcher Mike Gonzalez, and A.J. Burnett came in as a pinchrunner once he left the game.
Noesi then closed out the long night's journey into early morning with the help of a batted ball hitting an Orioles runner on the basepaths. Not the prettiest work, but awfully effective and appreciated at the end of a game that went on a lot longer than it should have.