Run-scoring singles by Lou Montanez, Matt Wieters and Brandon Snyder have given the Orioles a 4-1 lead going into the bottom of the eighth.
Mike Gonzalez tossed a scoreless seventh, allowing a two-out double and striking out one batter.
“I feel much better,” he said. “Every time I’m going out there, I’m feeling a little better. Getting more into my rhythm and timing. I definitely feel like the ball’s coming out of my hand a lot beter. It’s definitely a good time to start getting in a groove right now.”
I’ll pause here while you update your “ball coming out of my hand” list.
“Physically, I’m coming along,” Gonzalez continued. “Obviously, we’ve been working real hard at it. The trainers and I have been trying to nip it in the bud. It’s definitely feeling much better. I’m probably 95 percent with this back problem. I feel good about my next outing. I’m pretty sure I’m going to be fine, 100 percent.
“I’ve gotten to the point where I understand my body and know my body. When it says to give it a couple days, give it a couple days, especially in spring training. They’re fairly important, but for me it’s more about getting my timing and my rhythm, all that type of stuff. I’m not really trying to go out there and get outs. You’re going out there and making sure everything’s healthy to be ready to get those outs on April 6.”
Gonzalez said the back felt “about 80 percent” in Friday’s minor league game.
“Today, I felt about 95 percent with the back,” he said. “I felt it (tightness) twice while I was throwing today in the bullpen. Once I got into the game, I didn’t feel a thing, so it’s definitely feeling much better.”