Alfredo Simon retired nine of the last 10 batters he faced, Mark Teixeira’s single the only interruption. Four of the five hits he allowed, and all four runs, came in the first inning.
Simon didn’t walk a batter and struck out two. His velocity was outstanding.
Ross Wolf has replaced Simon. We’re not used to seeing him enter a game this early.
The Orioles collected seven hits off Andy Pettitte in 4 1/3 innings, including singles by Brian Roberts and Nolan Reimold in the fifth. Naturally, they still hadn’t scored against the veteran left-hander when Josh Schmidt replaced him with one out. He’s 26-6 lifetime against them.
Reimold stole second base as Adam Jones was striking out in the fifth. You don’t hear much about the Achilles anymore.
Roberts wants to play every day, which comes as no surprise. He’s not looking to be eased into competition after reporting to camp with a herniated disk in his back. But manager Dave Trembley will be careful with Roberts, knowing that he can’t afford to lose his second baseman and leadoff hitter, even with Julio Lugo on the roster.
Trembley will try to rest Roberts periodically. He must decide whether to give Roberts all three starts in the Tampa Bay series that kicks off the season.