After starting the Grapefruit League season 2-6, the Orioles have gone 3-2 over their last five games including three consecutive wins against the Phillies, Red Sox and Twins.
The O’s recorded just their second win last Wednesday in a 3-2 victory over the Pirates. But they followed that up with yet another loss after getting shelled by the Twins, 8-3. Orioles ace Kevin Millwood didn’t look much like a No. 1 starter after allowing five runs on nine hits over the first 2 2/3 innings. Despite the starter’s struggles, Jim Johnson and Koji Uehara each threw a scoreless inning of relief. Robert Andino had a good day at the plate, hitting a homerun in the third inning and a triple in the fifth.
Friday’s game against the Marlins was canceled due to the rain. However, the weather cleared up just enough on Saturday for the Orioles to lose to the Yankees, 5-3. Jeremy Guthrie got rocked in his third spring training start, facing nine men and allowing three runs in just the bottom of the first inning. He ended up pitching 3 1/3 innings and allowing four runs on eight hits while walking one and striking out one. Ty Wigginton connected on a two-run homer off Javier Vasquez in the second inning and Garrett Atkins led off the fourth inning with his first long ball of the spring season. The loss dropped the Orioles Grapefruit League record to 2-8.
The superb pitching of Brian Matusz and the hot bat of Nick Markakis helped end the Orioles’ two-game losing streak with a 4-3 win over the Phillies. Matusz was extremely efficient; throwing just 57 pitches over five innings and allowing only one run on three hits without walking a batter. Markakis recorded two singles on the day to push his spring season average up to .429. Nolan Reimold made just his second start of the spring season after being hampered by his offseason left Achilles tendon surgery. He seemed to be running close to full speed, but was seen limping in the dugout between innings.
The Orioles’ bats were hot early and often in their 8-4 win against the Red Sox and starter Tim Wakefield on Monday. They recorded nine hits over the first three innings including a three-run homer by Luke Scott in the third. Scott finished the contest with four RBI and Brandon Snyder doubled and hit a two-run homer, his first of the spring. The Orioles’ pitching wasn’t as sharp as their hitting, though. Brad Bergesen pitched 2 2/3 innings and allowed two runs on five hits and a walk. Cla Meredith finished the third inning and was followed by Chris Tillman, who also gave up a pair of runs over 2 2/3 innings, allowing four hits and three walks.
The Orioles beat the Twins 3-1 on Tuesday for their third win in a row. Justin Turner broke a scoreless tie in the fifth inning with a RBI single to left, one of his two hits on the day. Turner continues to make the most of his opportunities after filling in for the injured Brian Roberts. But the difference in the game was a two-run homer by Chad Moeller in the seventh inning to give the Orioles the lead for good. Starter David Hernandez had a great showing and only allowed five hits over 3 2/3 scoreless innings.
The Orioles’ next game is on Wednesday at 1:05 p.m. ET against the Blue Jays. Jason Berken is scheduled to make his first start of the spring for the Orioles.