New York Yankees defeat Baltimore Orioles, 5-1

BALTIMORE - The ground ball didn't appear to take any sort of bad hop, no matter what the Yankee players were saying afterward.

In truth it was the type that Jerry Hairston could field without a bobble 100 times out of 100 under ordinary circumstances.

So maybe the importance of the moment got to him. Then again, Hairston had saved the perfect game only an inning earlier with a barehand play on a slow roller. In any case, when he missed Adam Jones' grounder with two out...

BALTIMORE - Andy Pettitte was on his way to baseball immortality when Jerry Hairston beat him to it.

With two out in the seventh, Hairston let a routine ground ball go through his legs at third base, ending Pettitte's bid for a perfect game.

Pettitte lost the no-hitter on the next batter, giving up a single to Nick Markakis and ultimately had to settle for just another victory as the Yankees beat the Orioles, 5-1, Monday night.

"When you get as far as he did, you ...

Had New York Yankees third baseman Jerry Hairston Jr. been able to field Adam Jones' routine ground ball in the seventh inning Monday night, Andy Pettitte's dominating performance might well have been a historic one.

It's impossible to know whether Pettitte would have been able to retire the final six batters to complete the first perfect game - for or against them - in Orioles history. But with the way Pettitte was pitching and whom he was pitching against in the Yanke...