New York Yankees
To Francisco Cervelli, there's a simple way to explain the two plays in which Orioles runners were punched out at the plate late on Thursday.
"[Home plate] is my house," Cervelli said of home plate. "So nobodies going to come inside."
He proved that point twice in the Yankees' extra-innings loss.
In the bottom of the seventh, Vladimir Guerrero drilled a one-out double to right-center that looked like it was going to score Nick Markakis. But Robinson Cano spun and fired after receiving Curtis Granderson's throw from shallow center, with the ball meeting Markakis at the plate.
Cervelli scoopeed it cleanly and stood his ground as Markakis came in with a lowered shoulder. Markakis knocked Cervelli over, but the catcher held on.
"In that moment, you just have to hold the ball and that's it," said Cervelli, who was hit on the head and nose.
Members from the team training staff checked Cervelli after the play, but he stayed in the game.
The catcher executed a second tag-out at home on a throw from Granderson in the eighth. The center fielder gathered Chris Davis' bloop single to shallow left and fired home, his throw beating Mark Reynolds on a close play at the plate.
Once again, Cervelli held on.
"The ball gets there the same time as the runner," Cervelli said. "There's nothing you can do; just hold the ball."
NOVA NOT SO SUPER: Joe Girardi said before Thursday's game that he thought Ivan Nova was on par with any of the leading candidates for AL Rookie of the Year.
Nova didn't do anything to hurt is candidacy Thursday. But he didn't do much to distinguish himself either.
The rookie allowed three runs on five hits and three walks in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out two but struggled to command his off-speed pitches.
"I just tried to do to much," he said.
Nova entered play with 11 straight wins. That streak is still intact as he left with the lead. The loss went to Scott Proctor, who allowed the game-winning single to Robert Andino in the tenth.