AL BEast Notebook – April 2
Trying to show that last season was no fluke, Baltimore started the season with an impressive win in Tampa Bay over David Price and the Rays’ bullpen.
Everybody got hits for the Orioles Tuesday afternoon but it was the heart of the order that did all the damage. David Price gave up a two run homer to Matt Wieters in the first inning. Then, with two on, two strikes and two outs, Adam Jones smacked a go-ahead double in the seventh, and after an intentional walk to Wieters, Chris Davis took Jake McGee to the bleachers.
After Wieters’ homer in the first Orioles had lots of baserunners but Price did a good job of getting out of trouble. He escaped a bases loaded jam in the third and leadoff doubles in the fourth and sixth. Price ended his day after six innings with a lead, but McGee couldn’t put batters away.
McGee had two strikes on both Brian Roberts and Nick Markakis but the veterans each smacked the ball right back over the mound for singles. Then with two strikes to Adam Jones, the center fielder hit a clutch shot to deep left center for the go ahead runs. Davis’ three run homer followed. McGee has a dubious 67.50 ERA after one day.
Ben Zobrist homered in the fourth for Tampa’s first run. Joe Maddon and the Rays manufactured a couple runs in the sixth to take the lead. After a leadoff walk, Jennings doubled in a run, Fuld bunted him over to third, and Ben Zobrist hit a sacrifice fly to make it 3-2 Rays. But the pitchers couldn’t stop the O’s, giving up 13 hits (including two homers and four doubles) and four walks.
Jones, Wieters and Davis combined to get on base nine times and knock in all seven runs.
The division rivals meet again Wednesday night with Wei-Yin Chen opposing Jeremy Hellickson.