It was hard to determine who was happier: Jones, his teammates or manager Buck Showalter.
Jones contributed an RBI double to a four-run third inning, hit a three-run homer in the fourth and drove in a run with an infield hit in the eighth.
“A rest here and there is good,” Jones said. “Glad I was able to come back out there, add some more energy, and the guys followed suit. So, good series win.”
Baltimore took two of three from the AL East leaders after coming in with a seven-game losing streak. The Yankees have lost 11 straight series in Baltimore — the second-longest road skid in franchise history behind a 12-series drought at Oakland from 1985-91.
Jones led the way, going 3 for 5 and scoring twice.
“It’s a lot easier with him there,” Showalter said. “You could tell he was pretty fresh.”
Tanaka (5-5) lost his fourth straight start, extending the longest such streak of his career. The right-hander gave up seven runs and nine hits in 5 2/3 innings.
“I just thought he was in a lot of bad counts tonight,” manager Joe Girardi said. “His slider was not sharp tonight. He managed to get through a few innings and then he made some mistakes after that.”
The Yankees had 11 hits but stranded 11 and went 1 for 12 with runners in scoring position.
Kevin Gausman (3-4) allowed two earned runs and eight hits over 5 1/3 innings, walking five and striking out four. He twice escaped bases-loaded, two-out jams to earn his second win since April 13 and provide hope for a starting rotation that was 1-9 since May 8.
“I thought he didn’t break,” Showalter said.
The Orioles took charge in the third. After Jones’ run-scoring hit, Mark Trumbo hit a two-run double and Davis added an RBI single .
Jones’ fourth-inning homer on Tanaka’s first offering made it 7-1. It was the 14th long ball allowed by Tanaka in 11 starts, including eight in his last four appearances.
“It was a tough outing,” Tanaka said through an interpreter. “I was not able to get first-pitch strikes. To Adam Jones, those were the times you might have to throw balls first instead of just throwing aggressively for strikes.”
Davis hit his 11th home run with a man on in the seventh to cap his first multi-hit game since May 16.
Tanaka’s four strikeouts gave him 501, making him the eighth Japanese pitcher to reach 500 . Only four other pitchers have reached 500 Ks with the Yankees in their first four major league seasons: Andy Pettitte, Lefty Gomez, Orlando Hernandez and Mel Stottlemyre.
Yankees: SS Didi Gregorius was held out after being hit in the right hand by a pitch Tuesday night. X-rays were negative, but there was some swelling. Gregorius was available off the bench. . CF Jacoby Ellsbury took batting practice Wednesday and is edging closer to coming off the seven-day concussion DL, Girardi said. … 1B Greg Bird (ankle bruise) will begin his rehab assignment Thursday night with Class-A Tampa.
Orioles: C Welington Castillo was placed on the 10-day DL with a testicular injury that occurred when the baseball that hit Gregorius ricocheted downward and struck Castillo in the groin.
Yankees: CC Sabathia (5-2, 4.42 ERA) seeks his 16th career win against the Blue Jays when New York launches a four-game series in Toronto on Thursday night.
Orioles: The Boston Red Sox come to town for a four-game series. The contentious rivalry between AL East foes ramped up this season when an aggressive slide into second base by Orioles 3B Manny Machado in late April led to dangerously inside pitches, harsh words and a warning from MLB officials to stop the feuding.